The Kansas City Royals announced on Monday that they have signed outfielder Raul Ibanez to a major-league contract. In addition, the team called up infielder Christian Colon from Triple-A Omaha and designated Pedro Ciriaco and Justin Maxwell for assignment.
Ibanez, 42, was recently released by the Angels after hitting .157 with 3 HR and 21 RBI in 57 games. He will likely serve as outfield depth behind Kansas City's starting three of Alex Gordon, Jarrod Dyson and Lorenzo Cain while right-fielder Norichika Aoki is on the disabled list with a groin injury.
Ibanez's signing with the Royals marks his second stint with the organization; he hit .291 with 55 HR and 247 RBI in 398 games with the team from 2001 to 2003.
Colon, 25, will be called up to make his major league debut after hitting .296 with 4 HR and 37 RBI in 74 games for Triple-A Omaha. The fourth overall pick in the 2010 draft, Colon was ranked in 2011 by Baseball America as the 51st best prospect in all of baseball, and was recently slotted as the organization's fifteenth best prospect by MLB.com. He is known for his instincts and contact hitting, and is widely thought of as a second baseman at the major league level.
Maxwell and Ciriaco, who have been struggling all season, both cleared waivers after being designated for assignment earlier in the season. If they clear again, they can refuse assignments to Omaha and become free agents.