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Rays sign Sean Rodriguez to one-year deal, avoid arbitration

J. Meric

From Roger Mooney, Tampa Tribune:

As noted on MLB Trade Rumors, Rodriguez was projected to receive $1.2 million in arbitration this year, so this deal sounds about right. Rodriguez was in his first year of salary arbitration, so his price tag figures to only go higher in coming years.

Ever since coming over to the Rays in the Scott Kazmir trade, Sean Rodriguez has been a bit of a disappointment. The power that he displayed in the minor leagues -- 29 home runs in Triple-A in 2009; .300+ ISO overall in Triple-A -- has never translated to the majors, and he has hit for less and less power over the past few years. In 2012, Rodriguez had a mere 21 extra base hits, his lowest total so far and even fewer than noted slugger Jeff Keppinger.

Rodriguez will be 28 years old in 2013, and he still offers the Rays value in his defensive flexibility and offensive upside. If his bat doesn't start to improve rather than regress, though, he may become a fungible, expensive player on a team with Tim Beckham and Hak-Ju Lee getting closer to the majors.