The Chicago Cubs have signed infielder Chris Valaika to a minor league contract, according to MLB Network and FOX Sport’s Ken Rosenthal.
Mar 26, 2013; Jupiter, FL, USA; Miami Marlins shortstop Chris Valaika (13) is unable to tag out Washington Nationals center fielder Bryce Harper (34) at second base in the first inning during a spring training game at Roger Dean Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Valaika, 28, spent last season with the Miami Marlins at the major league level and at Triple-A New Orleans, where he hit .235/.296/.347 with four home runs and 15 RBIs in 48 games. Before a wrist injury, Valaika hit .219/.261/.344 with one home run and nine RBIs in 22 games at the major league level.
Valaika was one of several Marlins players that sparred with ex-hitting coach Tino Martinez, which caused Marlins’ owner Jeff Loria to veto Valaika’s promotion to Miami in August. He played every infield position this season before his injury and should be an utility infielder at Triple-A Iowa as well as providing depth for the Cubs.
Valaika was originally drafted by the Cincinnati Reds in the third round of the 2006 MLB Entry Draft and has hit .244/.281/.362 with two home runs and 11 RBIs in 55 major league games.