The Astros have signed free agent infielder Ronny Cedeno to a one-year, Major League contract, General Manager Jeff Luhnow announced today.
Cedeno is in the starting lineup at shortstop for this afternoon's game vs. the Miami Marlins.
"Ronny is a veteran player at a premium position that will stabilize our infield," Luhnow said. "He gives our young pitching staff a quality defender behind them."
Cedeno, 30, began Spring Training in the St. Louis Cardinal's camp, where he hit .290 in 16 games with a home run and five RBI before being released. In 2012, Cedeno hit .259 in 78 games for the New York Mets with four home runs and 22 RBI.
"I'm very excited to be here," Cedeno said. "This is a good opportunity for me. They have a lot of young guys here that I'm willing to help if they need me."
He has spent eight seasons in the Major Leagues (2005-12) primarily as a shortstop, but has also played second base and third base. Cedeno was the Pirates regular shortstop for the 2010-11 seasons and the Cubs everyday shortstop in 2006. He has played 779 Major League games in his career. In 2011, he led all NL shortstops in total chances per 9.0 innings (5.15) and ranked fourth in fielding pct. (.978).
This morning, the Astros optioned outfielder J.D. Martinez to Triple A Oklahoma City and reassigned catcher Jason Jaramillo to minor league camp. As a result of today's transactions, the Astros now have 34 players remaining in Major League camp.