Wilson Betemit Signing Simple Low Risk Depth Sign Or Sign Of Something Else?
Betemit, who is 32 years old, is coming off a serious knee injury (Video Below) which caused him to miss most of the 2013 season with the Baltimore Orioles.
In his last full season (2012) with the Baltimore Orioles he posted a triple slash line of .261/.322/.422 in 376 plate appearances and added 12 home runs.
Although he is listed as a switch hitter his career numbers are much better from the left handed side. Against right handed pitching he has a career slash line of .279/.347/.472 with 61 home runs in 1766 plate appearances while struggling versus left handed pitching hitting just .228/.285/.351 with 14 home runs in 569 plate appearances.
He has spent the bulk of his career playing third base (458 games) while also playing first base (81 games), shortstop (79 games), second base (20 games), and outfield (9 games). In recent years he has primarily been a 1b/3b/Dh which would most likely be his role if he were to make the Rays out of spring training or at some point during the 2014 season.
Over the winter he played for Gigantes Cibaos in the Dominican Republic and appeared in 23 games and posted a slash line of .267/.351/.349. As his career numbers above reflect he once again hit RHP at a .784 OPS while left handers held him to a .478 OPS.
On the surface the signing appears to be a simple low risk depth signing but this is the Rays. Despite the calendar turning to February there could be a move or two left for Andrew Friedman and company.
Betemit Knee Injury: