Betemit hopes for new start in Tampa Bay

Betemit hopes for new start in Tampa Bay
January 31, 2014, 12:15 pm
Share This Post

March 25, 2013; Sarasota, FL, USA; Baltimore Orioles third baseman Wilson Betemit (24) works out prior to the game against the Boston Red Sox at Ed Smith Stadium.

(Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)

After an awful 2013 season, Wilson Betemit has found a new team, and it’s the Tampa Bay Rays.

Betemit suffered a severely sprained right knee in the last week of spring training while running to second base. While the original estimate said he could be back in six-eight weeks, he didn’t begin his rehab assignment until early August.

The Orioles brought him up in late August, but after 10 hitless at-bats, let him go.

Betemit was popular in the clubhouse and could have helped the team last year as a DH. The switch-hitter is much better from the left side than the right.

His defense isn’t very good. In 2012, the Orioles rushed the untested Manny Machado to play third base because they knew Betemit’s glove would hurt them over the long term.

[RELATED:Outsourcing?]

Betemit signed a two-year contract with the Orioles just before spring training in 2012. This time, he was only able to get a minor league contract, but that was expected.

He hit 12 home runs in 102 games in 2012. His season was truncated by a right wrist injury.

The Rays hope that a healthy Betemit will be a good spot player.

Jason Hammel has reportedly signed with the Chicago Cubs pending a physical according to Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal.

And, this afternoon the Orioles announced that they signed infielder Alex Gonzalez to a minor league contract. Gonzalez, who will be 37 next month, has spent the last two years with Milwaukee. Last year, Gonzalez hit .177 in 41 games for the Brewers. Gonzalez will receive a spring training invitation.