The Mets claimed Ayala on waivers last week and the two teams then had 48 hours to work out a trade and needed almost all of that time to agree on a player. Finally, the Nationals accepted infielder Anderson Hernandez, who actually started the 2006 season as the Mets everyday second baseman, but has found little playing time in the majors since then. This season, he's also struggled at Triple-A, hitting just .203 at New Orleans.
|Anderson Hernandez comes to the Nationals on the recommendation of manager Manny Acta who was a coach with the Mets in 2005 and 2006 when Hernandez was in the majors with New York.|
Nationals manager Manny Acta was a coach with the Mets in 2005 and 2006 when Hernandez spent time on the major league club and he pushed for Hernandez to be in the deal. Acta cited Hernandez' defensive skills and attitude as primary reasons why he would be a good fit on the Nationals club.
Hernandez hasn't shown the ability to hit in the majors and has just a career average of .138 in 35 major league games. He does give the Nationals a stellar defensive player who will likely find his niche with the club as a utility player and with any luck, he may be able to develop into an adequate offensive player. The Nationals will have to wait until Wednesday to actually have Hernandez available on the roster, since he needs to clear minor league waivers before the trade becomes official. It's not likely that there will be any problems with him clearing waivers and the Nationals expect to have him available when they play in Philadelphia Wednesday night.