According to reports from Jesse Rogers, Bruce Levine and Ken Rosenthal, the Cubs signed utility man Emilio Bonifacio to a minor league contract. The deal includes a non-roster invite to Spring Training. The terms of the contract have not been released.
Updated 2:21pm CST – According to Jon Heyman, Emilio Bonifacio can make $2.5 million if he makes the Cubs roster. Bonifacio’s deal also includes a $425,000 incentives package. The Royals will pay Bonifacio $574,000 in termination pay.
The Royals released Emilio Bonifacio after they avoided arbitration by agreeing to terms on a one-year contract for the 2014 season. The 28-year old (April 23, 1985), switch hitter has played second, short, third and all three outfield spots at the Major League level.
Bonifacio hit a combined .243/.295/.331 in 136 games for the Blue Jays and Royals last season with 22 doubles, three triples and three home runs. The Royals picked up Bonifacio from the Blue Jays on August 14 and he hit .285/.352/.348 over the last 42 games for Kansas City.
The Royals designated Bonifacio for assignment on Feb. 1 to make room on the 40-man roster for Bruce Chen. Bonifacio avoided arbitration in January by agreeing to a one-year, $3.5 million deal. After not being able to trade Bonifacio, the Royals requested unconditional release waivers on Feb. 10. When Bonifacio was not claimed he became a free agent.
Rumors suggested the Cubs were interested in trading for Bonifacio after he was DFA’d.
The Cubs are not on the hook for any of the money the Royals agreed to pay Bonifacio for the 2014 season. If he sticks with the team, Bonifacio would become a free agent at the end of the season.
Updated 11:18am CST – Bonifacio was drawing a lot of interest from other teams according to Chris Cotillo. The Orioles are one of the 10 teams reportedly interested in signing him. According to Jon Heyman, Bonifacio turned down Major League offers to sign a minor league deal with the Cubs.
The Cubs have confirmed signing Bonifacio to a minor league contract. The deal includes a non-roster invite to camp so he will be in Mesa by Tuesday (Feb. 18) when the position players report.