11/18 Valaika to Cubs
According to FOX Sports and MLB Network’s Ken Rosenthal, the Cubs have signed infielder Chris Valaika to a Minor League deal with an invitation to Spring Training. Valaika, 28, appeared in 22 games with the Marlins last season, batting .219. He was originally drafted by the Reds in the third round in 2006, and signed with the Marlins as a free agent one year ago. He opened the 2013 season with the Marlins but went on the disabled list May 8 with a fractured left wrist and was eventually sent to the Minor Leagues. He batted .246 in 37 games at Triple-A New Orleans last season.
It’s no surprise Valaika left the Marlins. According to the Miami Herald’s Clark Spencer, Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria vetoed Valaika’s promotion from the Minors late last season. Loria was upset that Valaika, among others, had complained that he was verbally harassed by then-hitting coach Tino Martinez. Loria had picked Martinez to be the Marlins hitting coach. Martinez resigned from the Marlins in July.
Valaika’s agent, Joel Wolfe, told Rosenthal: “Chris is very excited to be with a first-class organization.”