Cardinals sign free agent IF Lance Zawadzki

The St. Louis Cardinals have added middle infield depth for Triple-A Memphis in a former draftee.

To replace infielder Ryan Jackson, promoted to St. Louis, the Cardinals have signed free agent infielder Lance Zawadzki to a minor league contract. The 27-year-old has been assigned to the roster of Triple-A Memphis.

Zawadzki hit .231 in 48 games for Triple-A Gwinnett earlier this season with 12 runs, nine extra-base hits and 17 RBI. He first went to camp with the Dodgers this spring on a minor league deal, then was released on May 7 after appearing in just five games for Albuquerque due to injury. Two weeks later, he joined the Braves, with whom he remained until being released last week.

San Diego's fourth round pick in 2007 can play both second base and shortstop. After working his way up through the Padres' system, he made his major league debut on May 2, 2010. After appearing in 20 MLB games with a line of .200/.300/.257, the left-handed hitter was returned to Triple-A and has not appeared in the majors since.

The Massachusetts native was claimed off waivers by the Royals from San Diego in November 2010 and was outrighted to the minors a month later. After playing with Triple-A Omaha in 2011, Zawadzki became a free agent following the season.

The Cardinals and their new player have a prior history, albeit brief. Following the 2006 collegiate season, Zawadzki was taken in the 15th round of the draft by the Cardinals. He did not sign and transferred to Lee University. Earlier, he attended LSU and San Diego State.

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