The St. Louis Cardinals signed outfielder Chad Huffman to a minor league deal, with an invitation to spring training. Huffman rejoins the organization after spending two years in Japan, and one with the Tigers organization.
Huffman played for Memphis- the St. Louis Cardinals AAA team- back in 2013 and slashed .282/.379/.472. He also had 13 homers. That was his 28-year-old season. He is 31 now, but is still posting good numbers. Last season, playing for the Tigers’ triple-A affiliate, Toledo, Huffman posted a .286 with 17 home runs in 122 games and led the league in OBS at .892.
Back in 2010, Huffman did see Major League time with the New York Yankees. That was a 9-game stint where he went 3-for-18. That translates to a batting average of .167. Worse still, in these nine games he managed to achieve no extra base hits.
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Since being drafted out of Texas Christian University in the second round of the 2006 draft by San Diego, Huffman’s career has taken many turns. In April of 2010 the Yankees selected him off waivers, then he was selected again by Cleveland in September of the same year.
In 2012, Huffman was granted free agency which was when he signed with the St. Louis Cardinals for the first time. After that year he became a free agent again. No takers that season sent him to Japan, where he played for two seasons. 2016 brought him back to the USA to play in the Tigers organization and ultimately- this week- he signed with the St. Louis Cardinals.
The signing appears to be nothing more than adding depth to the outfield. Best case scenario for veteran outfielder, however, is that he beats out a bubble player during the spring and can stay on the big league roster at the start of the regular season.
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At 31, Huffman can also play a leadership role to the young players in the organization. His experience could be useful to someone like Harrison Bader, who was taken in the third round of the 2015 draft. What do you think?