Jake Marisnick, member of 2017 Houston Astros, agrees to deal with Dodgers

Jake Marisnick of the Houston Astros reacts after hitting a single against the Washington Nationals in the 2019 World Series.
Jake Marisnick of the Houston Astros reacts after hitting a single against the Washington Nationals in Game 7 of the 2019 World Series.
(MLB Photos via Getty Images)

Acquiring another right-handed bat will likely be a need for the Dodgers before next month’s trade deadline.

On Thursday, however, they took a chance on a veteran free agent to fill the hole first.

The team agreed to a major league deal with outfielder Jake Marisnick, according to multiple people with knowledge of the situation unauthorized to speak publicly.

It’s not a big-name signing, adding a 32-year-old journeyman with a career .228 batting average, and below-league-average .672 on-base-plus-slugging percentage in 42 games this season.


The NL defeated the AL in the All-Star Game, but it was the friendly antics between teammates and opponents that left the biggest mark.

July 11, 2023

Still, Marisnick will bring 11 seasons of MLB experience and a strong defensive track record in center fielder with him to the Dodgers, whose only two current right-handed hitting outfielders are Mookie Betts (who has been splitting time in the infield this season) and Jonny DeLuca (a rookie who has seven hits in 33 at-bats).

Marisnick has two notable connections to the Dodgers.

A Riverside Poly product, he was teammates with catcher Austin Barnes in high school more than a decade ago.

In 2017, Marisnick was a member of the infamous Houston Astros team that was later revealed to be illegally stealing signs — though he wasn’t on the active roster for their World Series victory over the Dodgers that postseason.

Since being traded by Houston in 2019, Marisnick has bounced around the league. He played for the New York Mets in 2020, then had part-time stops with the Chicago Cubs and San Diego Padres in 2021, and the Pittsburgh Pirates and Chicago White Sox the last two seasons. He was designated for assignment by the Detroit Tigers last week.

He has never been a strong hitter (his best offensive year was in 2017, when he hit 16 homers and had an .815 OPS) but could provide important value defensively to the Dodgers, who rank third-worst in the majors in defensive runs saved in center field, where rookie James Outman has gotten the bulk of the playing time.