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Indians invite four to major league camp

By jcfortun Published: December 2, 2009

The suspense kept everyone on their toes: Who will be the seventh major league team for right-handed relief pitcher Jason Grilli?

We now know.

The Cleveland Indians announced the signing of four players to minor league contracts free agents with non-roster invitations to major league camp: Grilli, infielder Brian Buscher, left-hander Mike Gosling and infielder Luis Rodriguez.

Buscher, a 28-year-old corner infielder, played about half the season (61 games) at the major league level last season for the Minnesota Twins.  He hit .235 (32-136) with three doubles, a triple two home runs and 12 RBI in 61 games.

Since make his major league debut in 2007, Buscher has played about the equivalent of a full season (164 games) and has hit .266 (116-436) with 13 doubles , eight home runs  and 69 RBI.

Gosling, 29, will return for another chance to help the Indians bullpen. He appeared in 15 games last season for the Indians striking out 13, walking 11 and gave up 14 earned runs and 30 hits in 25 innings.  He was 0-0 with a 5.04 ERA.

Rodriguez, 29, was the opening day shortstop for the San Diego Padres last season until he was sidelined by a left ankle injury. He hit .202 (42-208) with 6 doubles, two home runs and 16 RBI.

Rodriguez does show a knack for getting on base as he walked 37 times compared to 23 strikeouts. He carried a .396 on base percentage before being injured in May.

Grilli, 33, brings the most experience of the group as he has appeared in 238 career games. he split last season between the Colorado Rockies and Texas Rangers. He was a combined 2-3 with one save and a 5.32 ERA in 52 games with 49 strikeouts, 27 walks, 27 earned runs and 50 hits in 45.2 innings.

He was acquired by Texas on June 9 and allowed three earned runs over his first 17 outings, but hit the disabled list in early August with right elbow inflammation.


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