BOSTON (CBS) — Will Middlebrooks’ time with the Red Sox is over.
Late Friday night, the Red Sox announced a deal that sends the third baseman to San Diego in exchange for veteran catcher Ryan Hanigan.
Middlebrooks, 26, was not long ago a promising prospect for the Red Sox. In his rookie season in 2012, he batted .288 with 15 homers, 54 RBIs and an .835 OPS in 75 games played. Yet his average dropped to .227 in 2013 and .191 this past season, and he spent parts of those seasons bouncing back and forth between the majors and Triple-A Pawtucket. In Triple-A, Middlebrooks batted .254 over the past two seasons.
Middlebrooks started in eight of Boston’s 16 postseason games in 2013, batting just .160 with two doubles, one RBI and a .490 OPS before losing his starting job to Xander Bogaerts.
After the 2014 season, Middlebrooks reportedly chose not to play winter ball, which went against the team’s requests.
Hanigan, 34, is a native of Andover, Mass. He has more than 550 MLB games of experience, spread out over eight years with the Reds and Rays.
Hanigan was acquired by the Padres just this week as part of the 10-player trade that also sent Wil Myers to San Diego.
Hanigan batted .218 with a .642 OPS last season. He’ll presumably be taking over the backup catching role that had been filled by current free agent David Ross, who hit .184 with a .629 OPS last season.
In his career, Hanigan owns a .256 batting average and .694 OPS.
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