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Positive reaction around the league to D-backs’ acquisition of J.D. Martinez

Detroit Tigers' J.D. Martinez watches his RBI single off Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco during the fourth inning of a baseball game, Friday, July 7, 2017, in Cleveland. Alex Avila scored on the play. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

The D-backs acquired J.D. Martinez from the Tigers Tuesday, picking up a power corner outfield bat and maybe more importantly a bat that has a .474 batting average against lefties this season.

He fills a major area of concern for the D-backs given they rank 28th in MLB against southpaws with a .226 average.

The D-backs hope that Martinez’s services will push them into the playoffs and beyond, but that may be all they do. Because Martinez becomes an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season, he is most likely only a rental for Arizona.

His rental status lowered his market value and allowed the D-backs to pick him up without giving up a whole lot, only parting ways with three prospects: Dawel Lugo, Sergio Alcantara and Jose King.

The three players were the D-backs 4th, 15th and 23rd ranked prospects, according to MLB.com, in what is widely regard as an underwhelming farm system.

While filling a need and holding on to the key prospects, much of the reaction around the baseball world was that the D-backs made a pretty solid deal. Below is some reaction regarding the trade.

This seems like a very light return for J.D. Martinez even as a rental; I don’t think Arizona gave up any of their top ten prospects in the deal, but they got a player who’s probably worth two wins to them the rest of the season. — ESPN’s Keith Law

J.D. Martinez is a pretty damn good hitter. I understand the idea of not giving up too much for midtier rentals. But when you have the top rentals — and I think J.D. Martinez is the top rental bat — giving up two or three names isn’t that crazy. Mike Hazen is a very smart guy. If he and his staff felt like the value is there, I’m certain that it is. — National League GM in an ESPN.com article by Jerry Crasnick.

This isn’t just a recent hot stretch for Martinez. Since he joined the Tigers in 2014, he’s one of five players in baseball with a .300 batting average and at least 90 home runs. And he and Mike Trout are the only two to do it with a slugging percentage over .550. — ESPN Stats and Info

Martinez is making $11.75 million this season, and will be a free agent in the off-season. That’s the main reason the prospect return from Arizona was, in a sense, underwhelming. Lugo, a 22-year-old shortstop, is batting .282 with seven homers and a .753 OPS in his first full season at Class AA. Alcantara is a year younger and a level lower – producing a .706 OPS and 11 stolen bases in 21 attempts at high Class A Visalia (Calif.). — USA Today Sports

Martinez will plug that hole and be a substantial improvement on Tomas and everyone else tried at that position, but he didn’t come free. To get him, Arizona had to surrender three prospects, all infielders: Dawel Lugo, Sergio Alcantara and Jose King. If those names don’t ring any bells, that’s understandable: No one in that trio made a top 100 prospect list this off-season, as all are products of the Diamondbacks’ bottom-of-the-barrel farm system. — Sports Illustrated’s Jon Tayler

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