12/31/2008 12:05 PM ET
Cubs, infielder Aaron Miles agree to two-year contract
CHICAGO -- The Chicago Cubs and infielder Aaron Miles today agreed to terms on a two-year contract. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
"We expect Aaron to provide significant versatility and flexibility to our roster," said Cubs General Manager Jim Hendry. "He handles the bat well from both sides of the plate and is a skillful middle infielder who has added third base and all three outfield positions to his repertoire during the last few years."
Miles, 32, batted .317 (120-for-379) with 15 doubles, four home runs, 31 RBI and a .355 on-base percentage in 134 games for the St. Louis Cardinals last season. The switch-hitter was remarkably consistent from both sides of the plate, batting .315 (35-for-111) vs. left-handed pitching and .317 (85-for-268) vs. right-handed pitching. He excelled in situations deemed "close and late", batting .350 (28-for-80) in those spots.
The versatile Miles last season appeared at seven positions in the field, making 85 appearances at second base (49 starts), 27 appearances (24 starts) at shortstop, 11 appearances (five starts) at third base, four appearances (three starts) in left field, one appearance in center field, one appearance in right field and one relief appearance on the mound. Miles combined to make only four errors in 373 total chances, good for a .989 fielding percentage.
In 643 major league games, the five-foot-eight, 185-pound Miles is a career .289 hitter (600-for-2077) with 81 doubles, 16 home runs and 170 RBI in all or part of six major league seasons with the White Sox (2003), Rockies (2004-05) and Cardinals (2006-08). He has appeared at every position in the field but first base and catcher, primarily seeing action at second base (468 appearances, 379 starts) and shortstop (107 appearances, 90 starts).
Overall in his career, Miles has batted .284 (143-for-503) with a .352 on-base percentage vs. left-handed pitching and hit .290 (457-for-1574) with a .321 on-base percentage vs. right-handed pitching. He is a career .317 (226-for-712) batter during day games.
Miles batted .364 (4-for-11) in seven post-season games during St. Louis' 2006 run to a World Championship.
A native of Pittsburg, California, Miles was originally selected by the Houston Astros in the 19th round of the 1995 June Draft.