Indians resign Rondon, lose Goedert
The Indians lost a long time member of their minor league system today as free agent third baseman/outfielder Jared Goedert agreed to a minor league deal with the Pittsburgh Pirates. They did, however, add two players earlier in the week as they signed free agent infielder Luis Hernandez and resigned right-handed pitcher Hector Rondon, both to minor league deals.
Goedert, 27, was drafted and signed by the Indians in the 9th round of the 2006 Draft out of Kansas State University. He played seven seasons in the Indians organization, and this past season in 121 combined games between Double-A Akron and Triple-A Columbus hit .311 with 19 HR, 77 RBI and .875 OPS. He was officially free to speak to other teams as a free agent as of Sunday, and the Pirates were quick to call and very aggressive in their pursuit of him. The union with the Pirates reunites him with Neal Huntington who was a part of the front office in Cleveland that drafted him in 2006.
Rondon, 24, has missed most of the last three seasons because of two major elbow injuries. He tore the UCL in his right elbow early in 2009 and required Tommy John surgery, and in his return while pitching winter ball last offseason fractured his right elbow. He only made four appearances late in the season with a minor league affiliate and is currently pitching winter ball in the Venezuela Winter League to make up for lost innings. If healthy, he is expected to be a part of the Triple-A Columbus bullpen next season and could still be a factor as a possible big league pen arm sometime next season.
Hernandez, 28, played last season in the Rangers organization at Triple-A Round Rock. In 129 games he hit .262 with 8 HR, 70 RBI, and .679 OPS, and was a late August callup to the Rangers while Michael Young was on paternity leave and played in two games. He was designated for assignment by the Rangers just three days later and declined an outright assignment to the minors and became a free agent. He is signed as minor league depth, and if he makes the Triple-A Columbus roster next season would likely fill the role that shortstop Gregorio Petit did for them in 2012.
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