It’s not every day that you get to hear about a team loaning out players like a lending library, but that was exactly the case on Saturday as the International League’s transactions page (h/t MLB Trade Rumors) noted that the Toronto Blue Jays had loaned out outfielder Ricardo Nanita to Tigres de Quintana Roo of the Mexican League.
And what a loan it turned out to be for Quintana Roo, as Nanita greeted his new team with a 1 for 4 performance, with that one hit being a 3-run home run.
The 32-year-old from Santo Domingo has been in the Blue Jays organization since 2010 and and has seen time in the White Sox and Nationals systems since 2003. And while Nanita has been invited to spring training in six different seasons, the 13-year minor league veteran has yet to appear at the major league level.
In 13 minor league seasons, Nanita has a solid career slash-line of .296/.361/.426 with 82 home runs, 100 stolen bases, and 502 RBI.
Nanita was also part of the 2013 World Baseball Classic champion Dominican Republic team, that featured Blue Jays teammates Edwin Encarnacion, Jose Reyes, and former Blue Jays outfielder Moises Sierra. In the 2013 tournament, Nanita appeared in five games, but went just 1 for 13.
Needless to say, it has been a journey for Nanita, but one that he’ll be continually pushing forward with. As he told Richard Griffin earlier this spring:
"“I’m very proud of being still in the game without making it to the big leagues,” Nanita said. “You always have a chance whenever you have the opportunity to play for an organization and I’m very thankful that the Blue Jays have signed me for the last four years. I’m just trying to do my job and you never know. I’m just pushing and pushing to see what can happen."
Maybe that journey continues through Mexico, and then hopefully, just maybe back to the Major Leagues.