Astros sign Feliz for hot corner
Third baseman played in past two World Series for Phillies
INDIANAPOLIS -- Before heading home from the Winter Meetings on Thursday afternoon, the busy Astros added another player to the fold by signing third baseman Pedro Feliz to a one-year, $4.5 million contract.
Feliz joins the Astros one day after they traded three Minor Leaguers to the Florida Marlins for reliever Matt Lindstrom and reached a contract agreement with reliever Brandon Lyon -- a deal that has yet to be confirmed by the club, pending a physical.
"We're very pleased to add Pedro to our infield mix," Astros general manager Ed Wade said. "He's been an outstanding defensive player and a solid run-producer for his entire career. He played a premium position with a two-time World Series participant and was a key part of the Phillies' success. We're fortunate to have him on board."
Feliz, 34, played the previous two seasons with the Phillies, helping them win the World Series in 2008 and return to the Fall Classic in 2009. He hit .266 with 12 homers and 82 RBIs in 158 games last year for Philadelphia, which recently signed Placido Polanco to play third.
Feliz spent the first eight years of his career with the San Francisco Giants and is a career .254 hitter with 135 homers and 558 RBIs. Known more for his defense, Feliz will allow the Astros to move switch-hitter Geoff Blum around the infield in what Wade calls a "super utility" role.
Blum re-signed with the Astros for one year and $1.5 million in October. He hit .247 with 10 home runs and 49 RBIs in 120 games last season with the Astros, spending most of his time at third base and committing only three errors.
"Geoff Blum has done a terrific job for us over the past two seasons, and despite the acquisition of a regular third baseman, we believe Geoff will get his at-bats with us and be a key contributor all around the infield," Wade said. "It's been a good week for us."
Houston also has Jeff Keppinger, who made 59 starts last season at third base, 14 at second base and three at shortstop. Rookie Tommy Manzella is expected to start at shortstop on Opening Day, with Kazuo Matsui starting at second base and Lance Berkman at first base.
Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.