The Milwaukee Brewers have agreed to terms with infielder Tony Fernandez on a Minor League contract that includes an invitation to Major League spring training, it was announced today by Senior Vice President and General Manager, Dean Taylor. No financial terms were disclosed.
Fernandez, 38, played in Japan in 2000 where he was the fourth leading hitter in the Pacific League. He batted .327 with 11 home runs and 74 runs batted in for the Seibu Lions.
A 16-year Major League veteran, Fernandez hit .328 for the Toronto Blue Jays in 1999, ranking him eighth in the American League that season. He was also named to the All-Star team for the fifth time in his career.
In 1999, he led the American League in batting with runners in scoring position with an impressive .399 batting average. Fernandez also posted a .427 on base percentage, good for fifth in the A.L.
He has 2,240 career hits including 92 home runs and 829 RBI in 2,082 games in the Major Leagues for Toronto, San Diego, Cincinnati, Cleveland and both New York clubs. He has more hits than any other player born in the Dominican Republic in Major League history.
A switch-hitter, Fernandez has also had great post-season success in his career posting a .338 average in 23 League Championship Series games and a .395 mark in 11 World Series contests. Fernandez batted .471 for Cleveland during the 1997 World Series.
With Fernandez' addition to the spring training roster, the Brewers will now have 59 players in their spring camp, which opens on February 14 at the Maryvale Baseball Park in Arizona.