Marlins sign 1B Rodriguez to Minors pact
MIAMI -- Jonathan Rodriguez, a power-hitting first baseman and outfielder, has signed a Minor League contract with an invitation to Spring Training.
The 28-year-old played for Double-A Chattanooga in 2017, batting .309, which placed him second to Marlins prospect Braxton Lee for the Southern League batting title.
Rodriguez is a power-hitting threat, belting 21 home runs in 119 games for Chattanooga. A native of Puerto Rico, he provides right-handed hitting depth, and will compete for a roster spot in Spring Training.
Rodriguez and Lee battled it out for the Southern League batting title in 2017. Both finished at .309, with Lee technically getting the edge by a percentage point in a race that went down to the final at-bat.
The two will now be in Spring Training competing for positions on the Marlins.
Lee was acquired last June from the Rays as part of the Adeiny Hechavarria trade, joining Double-A Jacksonville for the remainder of the season.
Lee is already on the 40-man roster, while Rodriguez will try to fight his way onto the Marlins' roster in Spring Training.
Listed at 6-foot-2, 250-pounds, Rodriguez was a 17th round Draft pick of the Cardinals in 2009.
In nine Minor League seasons, he has a career slash line of .273/.368/.450 with 119 home runs and 486 RBIs in 913 games.
In 2017, Rodriguez was in the Twins' system, and played 119 games at Double-A and five for Triple-A Rochester, adding one additional home run at that level.