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11/29/2005 2:05 PM ET
Phillies sign free agent Nunez
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Seeking to bolster the depth of the infield, Phillies Vice President and General Manager Pat Gillick today announced the signing of free agent infielder Abraham Nunez.

He signed a two-year, $3,350,000 contract that includes a club option for 2008 and performance bonuses.

"Nunez gives us some versatility in that he can play three infield positions and is a switch-hitter," said Gillick.

Nunez, 29, began last season as an extra infielder with the St. Louis Cardinals. When Scott Rolen went down with season-ending shoulder surgery, Nunez became the everyday third baseman the rest of the season and in the post-season. He played 98 games at third base (77 starts), 22 at second and 21 at shortstop.

In 139 games, Nunez hit .285 with a career-high five home runs and 44 RBI. He hit .364 with three runs scored in the Division Series against the San Diego Padres and .385 in the League Championship Series vs. the Houston Astros.

His average in late and close situations (.375) ranked fifth in the National League and he was among the top 10 with a .319 average after the sixth inning. As a pinch-hitter, Nunez batted .250. He was second on the Cardinals with six pinch-hits and tied for the most RBI, five.

The Dominican native was originally signed as an amateur free agent by Toronto in 1994. He was dealt to the Pittsburgh Pirates following his second pro season. Nunez played in the majors with the Pirates, 1997-2004, and signed as a free agent with St. Louis last January. With the Pirates in 2004, he was fourth in the National League with 62 pinch-hit at-bats.

Lifetime, he is a .248 hitter with 16 home runs and 161 RBI in 769 games.

The addition of Nunez puts the Phillies' 40-man winter roster at 37 players.

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