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Jason Giambi set to sign with Indians

Feb 9, 2013, 10:17 PM EDT

Jason Giambi Getty Images

The Denver Post’s Troy Renck reports that the Indians and first baseman Jason Giambi are closing in on a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

The 42-year-old Giambi was considered for the Rockies’ managerial vacancy earlier this winter, but after failing to get that, he said he wanted to keep playing. The Indians should have room for him as a left-handed-hitting DH after losing Travis Hafner to the Yankees.

Serving mostly as a pinch-hitter, Giambi hit .225/.372/.303 with one homer in 89 at-bats for the Rockies last season. He was much better in 2011, batting .260/.355/.603 with 13 homers in 131 at-bats.

If Giambi impresses this spring, the Indians could make him their primary DH against righties, with catcher Carlos Santana occasionally rotating into the spot. Santana and Mike Aviles could share time at DH against lefties.

  1. Old Gator - Feb 9, 2013 at 10:42 PM

    A guy who hit one homer for the Rocky Mountain Oysters, for Buddha’s sake, will now DH at sea…er…lake level. Oh-kaaaaaayyyyyyy….

    I don’t get how the Feesh missed this guy. He could have protected the Iron Giant in their lineup – you know, by jumping in front of him and taking a beanball….

    • dan1111 - Feb 10, 2013 at 4:34 AM

      89 at-bats is not much of a sample size. In any case, he appears not to have lost his on-base skills.

      • Old Gator - Feb 10, 2013 at 8:36 AM

        That ramifies to one home run approximately every eighteen games, assuming five at bats per game, at 5,300 feet ASL. Last year. Unless he’s getting younger, how many fewer home runs per game would you care to interpolate as he lumbers into middle age? And don’t forget, we’ve lost about 4500 feet of altitude and gained not just air density, but a pretty dense saturation of teratogenic particulata in the process.

        As far as on-base skills, yeah, but isn’t there anyone else out there who doesn’t have to be cranked up, lubed and have their caterpillar treads changed out before they’re permitted to run to second?

    • rayfeathers - Feb 10, 2013 at 12:18 PM

      everytime you write “feeesh” i die laughing. you are one funny guy.

      • Old Gator - Feb 10, 2013 at 10:39 PM

        Everytime you come on here with your illiterate carping about the same old thing, I yawn. You are one tedious specimen of lowlife.

  2. giantboy99 - Feb 9, 2013 at 10:56 PM

    Giambi will retire mid-season after toiling in the minors.

  3. tuberippin - Feb 9, 2013 at 11:08 PM

    Seriously? They took Giambi over Thome??

    • dan1111 - Feb 10, 2013 at 4:40 AM

      Any time a team signs a marginal player to a minor-league contract, people respond with some form of: “I can’t believe they signed this guy! Do they really think he is the answer?”

      No. It’s a minor league contract. They haven’t taken Giambi over anyone; he just has a chance to make the team, and maybe act as injury insurance if he is really willing to play in the minors.

      • tuberippin - Feb 10, 2013 at 3:41 PM

        That’s all well and good, but the ostensible intention behind signing Giambi is as a bench bat with the potential to be their DH (a spot which, for the Indians, is among the worst in the AL). They’re affording Giambi the opportunity at a roster spot, over an opportunity to give Thome that spot and see a higher level of production, because Thome would ask for maybe $1-2mil more on a one-year deal. They’d make that back just via enhanced ticket sales and marketing on a fan favorite like Thome.

        In this instance, the claim of taking Giambi over Thome is relevant in that the Indians just said a couple of days ago that they were no longer going to pursue Jim Thome’s services…and then proceeded to replace one lefty power hitter with a lesser lefty power hitter in Giambi. They’re projected to put up roughly the same level of production…so what is the upside in signing Giambi to this deal versus signing Thome to a deal?

  4. dubs15 - Feb 10, 2013 at 12:21 AM

    So basically they’re paying him to lift weights.

  5. mgscott - Feb 10, 2013 at 12:33 AM

    It was Giambi or Pedro Cerrano

    • aceshigh11 - Feb 10, 2013 at 10:11 AM

      Up your butt, Jobu.

  6. yankeepunk3000 - Feb 10, 2013 at 1:02 AM

    I’m happy to see giambino sign but Gator could be right he could of helped the Marlins more infront of Stanton a bit

  7. historiophiliac - Feb 10, 2013 at 1:18 AM

    Booooo! No more heckling him as he walks up to the plate when he’s rehabbing in Tulsa. :(

  8. rick1k6 - Feb 10, 2013 at 2:05 AM

    First time poster here. I guess this means AARP Night has been confirmed.

    • Old Gator - Feb 10, 2013 at 8:11 AM

      The guy’s a journeyman now. The AARP travel section will help him get around on a minor league income.

  9. jrocknstuff - Feb 10, 2013 at 9:50 AM

    I don’t mind the signing, but I thought the reasoning behind not signing Thome was that they didn’t want to tie up a roster spot with a guy that can ONLY DH?

  10. Al - Feb 10, 2013 at 10:22 AM

    Considering that the Rockies were ready to add him on as a hitting coach, doesn’t it make sense that a young team like Cleveland might see some value in just having him around at Spring Training?

  11. steelers88 - Feb 10, 2013 at 10:52 AM

    Giambi should just retire. I hate seeing good and great players struggling to find a job just because they don’t have it anymore.

  12. purnellmeagrejr - Feb 10, 2013 at 12:09 PM

    I was put on steroids after cancer surgery eariler in the year; Man! I was hungry alll the time. I’d carve off a piece or two from a Roast CHicken for mate and guest (if we were having company) and eat the rest of it myself. Leg of Lamb – same thing.

  13. purnellmeagrejr - Feb 10, 2013 at 12:11 PM

    THis guy can be treasured by Yankeees haters – the same way a Hank Bauer can be revered for Yankeees fans. It was fun watching him strugggle as a Yank after alll the todo about signing him. It loooked for for awhile but Jason came through and ran the ship aground.

  14. purnellmeagrejr - Feb 10, 2013 at 12:12 PM

    SOrry, looked bleak.

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