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Derrick Hall: Jon Jay was a piece D-backs needed right now

Kansas City Royals' Jon Jay hits an RBI-single in the third inning of a baseball game against the New York Yankees at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo., Friday, May 18, 2018. (AP Photo/Colin E. Braley)

Newly-acquired Diamondbacks outfielder Jon Jay will provide immediate relief to a depleted outfield.

With expected everyday players A.J. Pollock and Steven Souza Jr. missing extended time due to injury, the D-backs needed to go outside the organization to replace their production.

In the trade to acquire Jay, the D-backs parted with two minor league pitchers, Gabe Speier and Elvis Luciano.

“Jon Jay’s a really good player. He’s a winner. He’s been on winning teams, he’s been in the World Series a few times,” said D-backs president and CEO Derrick Hall. “He’s a bright force in the clubhouse, he’s someone we targeted in the offseason.”

Jay’s been very productive at the plate this season for the Royals hitting .307 prior to being traded to the D-backs Wednesday evening.

The D-backs farm system is still lacking in high-level impact prospects. This makes it more difficult to acquire impact big league players prior to the Aug. 1 trade deadline.

Giving up prospects is always difficult, but given the injuries the team has suffered, Arizona needed to acquire a productive outfielder to fill in during Pollock’s and Souza’s absence.

“It’s always tough to give up prospects, especially when you’re trying to replenish the farm system that had been depleted. We felt that this was a piece that we needed right now,” said Hall.

Luciano was the D-backs’ No. 28 prospect, according to Baseball America. The 18-year-old right-hander posted a 2.84 ERA in his first full season in the Pioneer League.

Speier is a 23-year-old left-handed pitcher who has been used mainly in relief. The newly-acquired Royal recorded a 3.03 ERA in 20 games for Double-A Jackson this season.

“This is a great move for this team, it’s a breath of fresh air and a shot in the arm,” said Hall.

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