CLEVELAND: With Brandon Inge out with an injury, the Tigers are looking for a third baseman. Now they have one: Jhonny Peralta.
The Indians dealt Peralta and cash to Detroit for minor-league left-hander Giovanni Soto. To fill the roster spot vacated by Peralta, Cleveland recalled middle infielder Luis Valbuena from Columbus.
The trade occured about an hour before tonight's game with the Yankees. Peralta already was in the lineup, but his place at third was taken by Andy Marte after the deal was consummated.
Peralta, 28, has been in the Tribe organization his entire career. Currently, he is batting .246 with 23 doubles, two triples, seven home runs and 43 RBI in 91 games. His most productive season was 2008, when he batted .276 with 23 homers and 89 RBI, but last year his production began to fall, as he batted .254 with 11 home runs and 83 RBI.
The guaranteed portion of his contract, worth $4.6 million, expires this year. He is still owed about $1.7 million for the remainder of the season, but the Tribe probably is paying all or part of it. He has a club option for $7 million for 2011.
Valbuena, who opened the season as the Indians Opening Day second baseman, hit .166 with 13 runs scored, six doubles, two home runs and 14RBI in 49 games with the Indians before being optioned to Triple-A Columbus June 24th.
Since arriving in Columbus, Valbuena has batted a red-hot .313 (30-for-96) with eight doubles, a triple, six homers, 20 RBI and a 1.032 OPS in 25 games. A big bulk of that offensive onslaught came over his last five games, where he's hit .400 with eight runs scored, three doubles, three home runs and eight RBI.