The Reds didn't get much from their bench last season. But on Monday, the club announced a deal that will try and change their fortunes in 2014.
According to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, Cincinnati has signed veteran utilityman Skip Schumaker to a two-year contract, pending a physical.
The 34-year-old Schumaker batted .263/.332/.332 in 356 plate appearances for the Dodgers last year. Overall, the California native owns a slash line of .285/.344/.372 in 3,043 career plate appearances. Known for his scrappy play and ability to play nearly any position on the field, Schumaker is entering his 10th season in the major leagues, eight of which he spent with the Cardinals from 2005-12, which is where he built a professional relationship with Reds GM Walt Jocketty. He should provide a definite upgrade to a Reds bench that was by all means woeful in 2013.
Of course, it should also be noted that although Schumaker has the flexibility to play several positions, he isn't so great with the glove. His -5.2 defensive WAR is quite concerning for a guy entrusted to be the utilityman.
Nonetheless, Schumaker is another veteran presence to bring to the clubhouse, who has a track record of being on winning clubs while serving as modest role player. Plus, this probably spells the end of the line for maligned infielder Cesar Izturis, which should make Reds fans happy.