The Los Angeles Angels have signed veteran infielder Jorge Cantu to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, per Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Reigister. Cantu, who turned 30 on January 30, struggled mightily in 2011 with the San Diego Padres.
Cantu split time between first and third base and hit .194/.232/.285 with three home runs in 57 games before getting released by San Diego on June 21. Cantu signed a minor league deal with the Colorado Rockies, but hit just .280/.320/.458 in 30 games in hitter friendly Colorado Springs in Triple A.
In 2008 and 2009 with the Marlins, Cantu hit a combined .283/.336/.462 with 83 doubles, 45 home runs, and 195 RBI. But Cantu has hit just .242/.287/.367 over the last two seasons. Cantu now mostly plays third base and first base, though he played primarily second base from 2004-2006 when he came up with the Tampa Bay Rays.
As it stands, the Angels have a fairly crowded bench without any other moves. Two of Bobby Abreu, Mark Trumbo, and Kendrys Morales figure to occupy bench spots, with Alberto Callaspo as the backup middle infielder and either Bobby Wilson or Hank Conger as backup catcher.
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