The Orioles acquired infielder Ruben Tejada from the Yankees for cash considerations, as per announcements from both teams. Tejada will be assigned to Baltimore’s Triple-A affiliate in Norfolk.
Tejada signed a minor league deal with the Yankees over the winter and entered today’s play hitting a solid .269/.345/.462 in 148 PA at the Triple-A level. As Joel Sherman of the New York Post tweets, Tejada became an expendable infield piece with the recent promotion of top prospect Gleyber Torres, not to mention Tyler Wade, Donovan Solano, and the likelihood that Rob Refsnyder will soon be optioned back to the minors. The Orioles’ Norfolk depth chart also features some familiar MLB names (Chris Johnson, Johnny Giavotella, Luis Sardinas) so it is possible a further move could be forthcoming to create space, or the O’s simply want to add even more veteran depth on the farm.
Tejada was a regular in the Mets’ infield from 2010-15 before being released by the team in March 2016. The 27-year-old caught on with the Cardinals but then immediately suffered a hamstring injury, leading to a lost season that saw Tejada bounce from St. Louis to San Francisco and only manage a .489 OPS over 78 plate appearances. Never much known for his hitting (Tejada has a .252/.327/.320 career slash line in 2263 PA), Tejada will now give the O’s some versatile depth at shortstop, third and second base.