The Astros have added Ronny Cedeno to improve their options up the middle this season, writes AJ Cassavell of MLB.com. Cedeno was originally signed by the Cardinals this off-season but was released last week and became a free agent again.
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Cedeno is an eight-year veteran who has seen time with the Cubs, Pirates and Mets, primarily as a utility infielder. Very much the stereotypical, light-hitting middle infielder, Cedeno has a .247/.290/.357 batting line in 2495 career plate appearances.
However, he did flash a more evolved approach at the plate as a member of the Mets last season, posting a career high 9.1% walk rate in 186 plate appearances. His defense is well-regarded, though his work at shortstop and at third is below average by Ultimate Zone Rating (UZR), Defensive Runs Saved (DSR) and Total Zone (TZ).
At second, the metrics agree with most observes, with UZR crediting Cedeno with 5.4 runs saved per 150 games at the position.
The addition of Cedeno means that the Astros are now planning on a mix of Cedeno and Marwin Gonzalez at shortstop for the 2013 season.
The team is actively shopping infielder Tyler Greene. The 28 year-old Greene hit .230/.274/.400 in 330 plate appearances with the Cardinals and Astros last season and struggled so far this spring with a .167/.314/.214 batting line in 51 trips to the plate.