The Indians announced that they’ve re-signed outfielder Melky Cabrera to a minor league contract and assigned him to Triple-A Columbus for the time being. Cabrera is represented by the Legacy Agency.
Cabrera, 33, was with the Cleveland organization earlier this season after signing a minor league deal in late April and having his contract selected to the big league roster just a few weeks later. The veteran switch-hitter, though, didn’t get much time to ramp up in Triple-A after sitting out Spring Training, and he showed some visible signs of rust in the Majors. After hitting .286/.286/.381 through 42 plate appearances in Triple-A, he jumped to the Majors and hit .207/.242/.293 through 66 plate appearances before being designated for assignment.
Upon that original DFA, Cabrera refused an outright assignment to Columbus in favor of free agency, presumably hoping to see if another club provided a clearer path back to the Majors. Apparently, Cabrera either didn’t find an offer to his liking or saw the recent injury to Lonnie Chisenhall as a potential means of opening a door to the Majors with the Indians once again.
While the 2018 season has been a struggle for Cabrera, he posted a roughly league-average offensive season between the Royals and White Sox last season, batting a combined .285/.324/.423 with 17 homers, 30 doubles and a pair of triples through 666 plate appearances. Overall, dating back to the 2014 campaign, Cabrera has batted a combined .289/.333/.431 — good for a 110 OPS+ in that time.