D-Backs Reach 2-Year, $15 Million Deal With Kubel

PHOENIX (AP) — The Arizona Diamondbacks have reached agreement on a two-year, $15 million contract with free agent outfielder Jason Kubel.

General manager Kevin Towers confirmed the deal late Monday afternoon, saying it was contingent on Kubel passing a physical. The contract includes a mutual option for a third year.

The addition comes as something of a surprise because it would send left fielder Gerardo Parra to the bench as the Diamondbacks’ fourth outfielder. Parra had a breakthrough season a year ago, batting .292 and winning a Gold Glove as one of the game’s best defensive outfielders.

Kubel would add a lefthanded-hitting slugger to the batting order in home run-friendly Chase Field. He had 104 home runs and 429 RBIs in seven seasons with the Minnesota Twins.

The 29-year-old outfielder was limited by injury to 99 games last season, batting .273 with12 homers and 58 RBIs. In 2010, Kubel hit .249 in 143 games with 21 home runs and 92 RBIs. His best season came in 2009, when he batted .300, hit 28 home runs and drove in 102.

The Twins had talked about re-signing Kubel but chose instead to sign ex-Oakland slugger Josh Willingham. Kubel is the third longtime Minnesota player to leave as a free agent this offseason. Closer Joe Nathan signed with Texas and outfielder Michael Cuddyer signed with Colorado.

The Diamondbacks apparently would try to get Parra a significant amount of playing time as the backup in all three outfield positions. The reigning NFC West champions have Chris Young in center and Justin Upton in right. When Arizona plays interleague games on the road, Kubel probably would be the designated hitter, opening more playing time for Parra.

The move also gives the team depth in case of injury.

Until now, Towers’ offseason moves have centered on pitching. He acquired right-handed starter Trevor Cahill, lefty reliever Craig Breslow and cash from the Oakland Athletics for leading pitching prospect Jarrod Parker, reliever Ryan Cook and outfielder Collin Cowgill.

The team signed 41-year-old reliever Takashi Saito to a 1-year, $1.75 million contract.

Towers also re-signed second baseman Aaron Hill and utility infielder John McDonald, both acquired in a late-season trade with Toronto.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • Obadiah

    The Twins gave away Delmon Young and Jim Thome. Missed out on Michael Cuddyer and now let Jason Kubel slip away. Josh Willingham seem’s like a good pickup but we’ve lost way more offense than we’ve gained so far. I hope Terry Ryan knows what he’s doing, because I’m just not seeing it. Last year going into the season, we had all those players I listed above. What is the plan for DH? …or any kind of backup for first base and the outfield? What’s the plan for pitching? I sure nope there is more to come because it looks to me we’re on pace for a 108 loss season as it stands now. Drawing on a triple-A team that is itself the worst in its league does not offer any help either. At this point we only have one credible reliever (Perkins) and none of our starters would be any better than a 4th pitcher on just about any other team. The Twins got their new stadium. They owe their fans something better than being worst in the league.

    • Ha

      Expect to see Mourneau as the DH, Mauer playing alot of 1St and some clown from the minors to play some 1st also, I think the twins are banking on rebound years from Mauer and Mourneau which is quite a risky thing to bank on, I decided not to renew my 20 game package because they had the nerve to ask me for my 1st payment before last season even ended, wow am i glad i didn’t renew.

  • Tree Hugger


    I can’t stand this team anymore. They wanted this stadium so they could make more money to make a more competitive team. Looks like the under $100MM theory was right on target, I think were headed to under $80MM. We should be getting some kickbacks from the other MLB teams, after all, we are their farm system.

  • Twins Win 1

    The legacy of Bill Smith at work is my opinion. It’s gonna take Ryan and the organization at least 4 years to undo this mess and of course, I hope I am way overshooting that estimate.

  • mr obvious

    Good Riddence. Kubel was a constant underacheiver.

  • Crosby

    Yeah unless we have some miracle that actually allows Mauer and Morneau to play at their previous levels or unload them onto some other team our cap space won’t be sufficient to bring any real pitching.

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