Phillies strike deal with Rockies for Wigginton

Phillies strike deal with Rockies for Wigginton

The Phillies added a veteran presence to their bench Sunday night by acquiring Ty Wigginton from the Rockies in exchange for a player to be named later or cash.

The versatile Wigginton can play each of the corner positions and serve as the right-handed compliment to left-handed slugger Jim Thome, who rejoined the Phillies earlier this month with a move that was also aimed toward improving the club's depth.

First baseman Ryan Howard will begin the season on the disabled list as he recovers from a torn Achilles tendon, and there is a chance third baseman Placido Polanco will also be sidelined early on as he recovers from sports hernia surgery.

2011 awards
MLB.com takes a glance at each position entering the Hot Stove season.

SP: Plenty of mid-tier arms
RP: Closers flood market
1B: Pujols, Prince elite
2B: Thin but reliable
3B: Aramis the lone big bat
SS: Attention on Reyes
OF: Bargains available
DH: Ortiz the top target
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Wigginton will provide insurance at both corner-infield positions and also possibly see some time in left field. The 34-year-old played first base (36 games), third base (68 games), left field (21 games) and right field (six games) for the Rockies this past season.

Along with versatility, Wigginton also brings some power potential to Philadelphia. He has hit at least 20 homers in four of the past six seasons.

Wigginton batted .242 with 15 home runs and a .416 slugging percentage in 401 at-bats for the Rockies this year. In a limited role as a pinch hitter, he recorded two hits in 13 at-bats.

After batting .248 with 22 homers while recording a career high 581 at-bats with the Orioles in 2010, Wigginton signed a two-year, $8 million contract with the Rockies. The Phillies will be responsible for just half of the $4 million that he is owed as he enters the final guaranteed year of this deal in 2012.

Wigginton has batted .296 (16-for-54) with three home runs and a .574 slugging percentage in the 16 games he has played during his career at Citizens Bank Park.

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.