Miguel Rojas

 

Miguel Elias Rojas Naidernoff was born on February 24, 1981 in Los Teques, Miranda, Venezuela. At 17, Rojas was signed by the Cincinnati Reds as an amateur free agent in 2006. He remained in the Reds’ minor league system through 2012 and eventually reached the AAA level for them. In 2013, Rojas moved on to the Los Angeles Dodgers and played for the Chattanooga Lookouts (the Dodgers AA team) and hit .233 in 130 games. In 2014, he moved up to the Albuquerque Isotopes (the Dodgers AAA team) and took a big step forward by hitting .302 in 50 games with the team. Rojas would make his Major League debut for the Dodgers in 2014 and was mostly used for defensive reasons late in the game for Hanley Ramirez.

At the end of the 2014 season, Rojas was involved in a 7-player trade between the Dodgers and the Miami Marlins. His defensive skills and decent bat made it difficult for the Marlins to take him out of the lineup. In 2017 and 2018, Rojas began to come around even more with the bat. In 2018, his season was a shorter one (90 games) due to a broken thumb, but Rojas excelled. During that same year, he set career highs in games played (153), runs scored (44), hits (123), home runs (11), RBI (53), and stolen bases (6). By the time 2019 rolled around, Rojas had agreed to terms on a new 2-year deal worth north of $10 million. Although he was sidelined for a bit in 2020 by COVID-19, Rojas and the Marlins made the most of the shortened season and made it to the playoffs. They play in a very competitive division, but Rojas and his team are moving the needle every single year.

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By Steve Farace