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02/19/10 5:23 PM ET
Padres bring Barfield back on Minors deal
Former starting second baseman to report on March 12
By Corey Brock / MLB.com
PEORIA, Ariz. -- In a blast from the past, the Padres have signed former infielder Josh Barfield to a Minor League contract. Barfield, who was the Padres' everyday second baseman in 2006, will report to Spring Training on March 12. Barfield wasn't offered a Spring Training invitation to Major League camp. Barfield, 27, was selected by the Padres in the fourth-round of the 2001 First-Year Player Draft and hit .280 with 13 home runs and 58 RBIs in 150 games in 2006. "I think there's some familiarity with a lot of people in San Diego, a place where he was comfortable and had success. For us, maybe we can get him going to regain his old form in a place he's comfortable," said Padres director of player development Randy Smith. "Hopefully, he can get his career back on track and we can both reap the benefits." In a move that was criticized at the time, the Padres sent Barfield to Cleveland during the offseason of 2006 for pitcher Andrew Brown and third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff. Kouzmanoff went on to hit 59 home runs over three seasons (2007-09) with the Padres. He was traded to Oakland in the offseason. Barfield began the 2007 season as the Indians' starting second baseman but struggled at the plate, hitting .243 with three home runs and 50 RBIs. He had a combined 53 at-bats with the Indians in 2008-09. He made the Indians' Opening Day roster in 2009 as a utility man but was later sent down to Triple-A Columbus. Barfield hit .252 last season with Columbus with three home runs and 35 RBIs. He was outrighted off the Indians' 40-man roster in September. Barfield will likely begin the season with Triple-A Portland.
Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.