Updated – 6:24pm C.T. – Mark DeRosa agreed to a 3-year contract with the Cubs on Tuesday
According to a report on ESPN.com from Buster Olney, the Cubs have agreed to a 3-year, $13 million dollar deal with utilityman Mark DeRosa. DeRosa recorded career highs in 2006 with the Texas Rangers after spending the first part of his career with the Atlanta Braves (1998-2004). In 136 games for the Rangers he posted a .296 average, 13 home runs, 74 RBI’s, a .357 OBP and a .456 SLG. DeRosa’s career numbers are .273/.331/.404 in 9 Major League seasons.
DeRosa played 2nd base, 3rd base, shortstop, left and right field last season for the Rangers and will be the starting 2nd baseman for the Cubs in 2007. DeRosa played 2nd base for the Braves and was looking for an opportunity to play that position again on a full time basis. According to Jim Hendry, Ronny Cedeno and Ryan Theriot will now have to earn a spot on the team out of Spring Training and the odd man out will be sent to Iowa.
DeRosa, 31, hit .342 against left-handed pitching last season and will give the Cubs a solid middle infield with Cesar Izturis expected to be healthy and play a full season at shortstop. DeRosa is the first free agent this off-season to sign with another team. DeRosa is a Type B (rankings handed down at the end of the season) player and the signing will cost the Cubs the 3rd pick in the second round of the 2007 draft.
Will update if more information becomes available….