Ronnie Belliard Rumors

Ronnie Belliard Retires

Ronnie Belliard, currently with Lehigh Valley, the Phillies' Triple-A affiliate, is retiring, according to Bob Brookover of the Philadelphia Inquirer (via Twitter).

Belliard, primarily a second baseman, played in 13 Major League seasons, most recently with the Dodgers in 2010, when he posted a .216/.295/.327 line in 185 plate appearances. He began his career with the Brewers, by whom he was drafted in the eighth round in 1994, and was once traded for Hector Luna. He also spent time with the Rockies, Indians, Cardinals and Nationals.

Belliard signed a minor league deal with the Phils after being released by the Yankees toward the end of Spring Training but did not see a promotion. He calls it a career with a .273/.338/.415 line.


Phillies Sign Ronnie Belliard

The Phillies have signed infielder Ronnie Belliard to a minor league contract, tweets Todd Zolecki of MLB.com.

Belliard, released by the Yankees on Monday, will report to Triple-A Lehigh Valley, according to Zolecki. Presumably, the move was made for injury insurance at the infield positions, where the Phils are thin between second baseman Chase Utley being shelved and third baseman Placido Polanco coming off offseason elbow surgery.

Yesterday, the Phillies released Luis Castillo, eliminating him from contention for the second-base gig. So, it looks like the Phils will go with Wilson Valdez as the starter there for now.

Belliard, 35, hit .216/.295/.327 in 185 plate appearances for the Dodgers last year, playing first, second and third.


Yankees Release Ronnie Belliard

The Yankees released Ronnie Belliard, according to Wallace Matthews of ESPNNewYork.com (on Twitter). The Yankees signed the veteran infielder to a minor league deal last month, but he did not make the team. Instead, Eduardo Nunez and Eric Chavez will be the Yankees' backup infielders.

Belliard, 35, hit .216/.295/.327 in 185 plate appearances for the Dodgers last year, playing first, second and third. He has a .273/.338/.415 line in 13 MLB seasons.



Quick Hits: Vlad, Brewers, Yankees, Pujols

Nine years ago today, MLB announced it had withdrawn its plan to contract the Twins and Expos due to legal issues and major opposition from the players' union. Minnesota has won six division titles and moved into Target Field since then, and they now boast a $100MM+ payroll. The Expos have since relocated to Washington and moved into Nationals Park, and this winter they handed out their first $100MM+ contract.

Here's some links for Saturday…


Yankees, Ronnie Belliard Agree To Minor League Deal

The Yankees and Ronnie Belliard have agreed to a minor league deal, according to Enrique Rojas of ESPNDeportes.com (via Twitter).  The 35-year-old Praver Shapiro Sports Management client will earn $825K plus incentives if he makes the varsity squad.

After giving the Dodgers some major pop down the stretch in 2009, Belliard was retained on a $825K deal that only became guaranteed upon him weighing in under 210 pounds.  While the veteran may have looked more svelte in Dodger blue, he was less-than-impressive at the plate, hitting .216/.295/.327 in 82 games.  Belliard was DFA'd by the club in September.


Dodgers Designate Ronnie Belliard For Assignment

The Dodgers have designated infielder Ronnie Belliard for assignment according to MLB.com's Ken Gurnick (via Twitter). The move frees up a 40-man roster spot for outfielder Trent Oeltjen.

Belliard, 35, hit just .216/.295/.327 with two homers in 185 plate appearances this season. He signed a one year contract worth $825K this winter. Oeltjen, 27, hit .347/.416/.563 in 226 plate appearances with Los Angeles' Triple-A affiliate this year. 


Belliard Makes Weight; Contract Guaranteed

Ronnie Belliard weighed in at 208 pounds, so his contract with the Dodgers is now guaranteed, writes Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times. Belliard reported to camp weighing 211 pounds, but his $825K contract only became guaranteed once he weighed less than 210 pounds.

The 34-year-old is fighting for playing time in the Dodgers infield. Last year, he played league average defense around the infield for the Nationals and Dodgers, hitting .277/.325/.451 in 287 plate appearances. Belliard is competing for the starting second baseman's job and spending time at the corner infield positions.


Odds & Ends: Alvarez, Strasburg, Church, Rays

Links for Saturday…


Odds & Ends: Belliard, Nats, Looper, Gathright

Friday night linkage..


Dodgers Notes: Ramirez, Belliard, Belisario

Some quick hits about L.A.'s blue team…

  • Dylan Hernandez of the Los Angeles Times reported that Manny Ramirez said he would play three more years in the majors and then two years in Japan.  This came just a day after Ramirez hinted that 2010 would probably be his last year with the Dodgers and possibly his last year in baseball altogether.  At this point, Ramirez could announce that he wants to play for Mr. Burns' softball team and nobody would bat an eye.  
  • Hernandez also reported that infielder Ronnie Belliard estimated his weight at "210 or 211 pounds" upon his arrival at the Dodgers' spring camp.  If Belliard weighs in at 209 pounds or less at any point during the spring, the $825K contract he signed last month will become guaranteed.
  • MLB.com's Ken Gurnick says that reliever Ronald Belisario hasn't arrived to spring training yet due to a visa problem in his native Venezuela.  It shouldn't be a major issue (Hernandez tweeted earlier today that the pitcher is expected this week), but Gurnick noted that if Belisario is held up for too long past L.A.'s March 5 preseason opener, the Dodgers couldn't send him down to the minors without risking losing him to a waiver claim since Belisario is out of options. 
  • In a separate piece, Gurnick talks to Brian Giles, who is looking at his minor-league deal with the Dodgers as his "last shot" to see if he's healthy enough to continue playing.