Giants fix shortstop shortage by acquiring Machado from Cubs


SAN FRANCISCO -- Shortstop Dixon Machado played for the Lotte Giants last year, so he has a “Giants” elbow guard and shin guard already. He received a lot more gear on Sunday.

The Giants acquired Machado from the Chicago Cubs' Triple-A affiliate and put him right in their lineup to fill a huge hole caused by Brandon Crawford’s knee inflammation and Thairo Estrada’s concussion. Estrada was placed on the 7-day concussion IL a day after getting hit in the head by a changeup Saturday night.

Minor league right-hander Raynel Espinal, a depth arm, was sent to the Cubs. The Giants cleared a 40-man spot by DFA’ing right-hander Tobias Myers.

Machado, 30, went right into the Giants' lineup, batting seventh against a lot of former teammates.

“It’s just weird, you know?” he said, smiling. “Playing the Cubs is just awkward.”

Machado was batting .312 with a .796 OPS in Triple-A but is considered a glove-first shortstop, a need for the Giants right now. 

On Saturday night they found themselves in a position manager Gabe Kapler described as "pretty challenging." 

Crawford (knee inflammation) is on the IL and likely won't be activated until Wednesday or Thursday at the earliest. His backup, Estrada, will be out at least a week. Donovan Walton, the only other shortstop on the 40-man roster, is on the injured list in Triple-A. Prospect Will Wilson, another potential option, had hamate surgery in June and is rehabbing. 

The Giants could have recalled Isan Diaz, a Triple-A infielder who has experience at short, but opted for Machado in a move that should not have come as a surprise. Giants general manager Scott Harris came from the Cubs, who are in town this weekend, making them a bit easier to trade with.

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Machado had been with the Triple-A Iowa Cubs in St. Paul, Minnesota, but the Giants being on Sunday Night Baseball gave them a little bit of extra time to get him to San Francisco. Machado arrived in San Francisco at 11:20 a.m. PT. 

“It’s been crazy,” he said. “I don’t even feel tired.”

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