|UPDATE: Kottaras Claimed by Brewers, Cabrera Elects Free Agency||11.18.09 at 9:55 am ET|
With Jason Varitek set to return to the Red Sox as a backup catcher and Victor Martinez returning for the 2010 season, the Red Sox’ catching situation seemed set for the 2010 season. As a result, it comes as little surprise that the Red Sox put catcher George Kottaras on relief waivers, according to a team source. UPDATE: According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, the Brewers were awarded a waiver claim on Kottaras on Wednesday.
Kottaras hit .237 with a .308 OBP, .387 slugging mark, a homer and 10 RBIs in 2009. The 26-year-old — who was acquired from the Padres in exchange for David Wells in 2006 — served primarily as Tim Wakefield‘s personal catcher over the first half of the 2009 season, working well enough with the pitcher that Wakefield was named to the All-Star team for the first time in his career.
Kottaras was out of minor-league options, and so rather than trying to pass him through outright waivers, the Sox put him on unconditional release waivers. As of today, he will be a free agent, free to negotiate with all clubs. (NOTE: Kottaras did not achieve free agency due to the Brewers’ waiver claim.)
Fernando Cabrera, who was placed on outright waivers by the Sox earlier this month, also elected free agency. The right-hander allowed five runs and struck out eight in 5.1 innings for the Sox after forging a 1.71 ERA for Triple-A Pawtucket.
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