LaPorta can't refuse AAA assignment. Lillibridge (eligible for arbitration & a non-tender candidate) can refuse & elect free agency.— Jordan Bastian (@MLBastian) November 20, 2012
LaPorta can’t refuse his Triple-A assignment, while Lillibridge, who’s eligible for arbitration and a non-tender candidate, can refuse and elect instead to hit the open market.
Lillibridge was selected in the fourth round of the 2005 MLB Draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates, but he’s since been traded four times, including twice last year. He’s been in trades that have involved players such as Mike Gonzalez, Adam LaRoche, Javier Vazquez and Kevin Youkilis.
Lillibridge spent last season with the Chicago White Sox, Boston Red Sox and Cleveland Indians. Over 102 combined games the 29-year-old hit .195/.250/.274 with six doubles and three home runs over 190 at-bats. He owns a career line of .213/.278/.350.
LaPorta was a first-round pick and former top prospect, but his talent in the minors hasn’t translated at the major league level. Over parts of four seasons in the bigs the 27-year-old has hit .238/.301/.393.