Cards designate Cedeno for assignment
Outfielder struggled in Majors, on rehab assignment in Minors
ST. LOUIS -- Roger Cedeno's tenure in a St. Louis uniform is over, probably for good. Scott Seabol's time with the "birds on the bat" has reached what is likely a more temporary hiatus.
Cedeno was activated from the disabled list and immediately designated for assignment on Friday. Seabol will be optioned to Triple-A Memphis on Saturday, while Hector Luna will be recalled. Cedeno had been playing at Triple-A on a rehabilitation assignment after being placed on the DL with a strained hamstring.
Cedeno struggled mightily both for the Cardinals and in the Minors this season, batting .158/.197/.175 (batting average/on-base/slugging) for St. Louis and .174/.269/.217 for Memphis. The Cardinals have 10 days to trade Cedeno, waive him and give him his release or waive him and outright him to the Minor Leagues.
"[General manager Walt Jocketty] was down there, and the people that were watching him play didn't feel that he's better than somebody else for this roster spot," said manager Tony La Russa. "It comes down to that. He went down there with an opportunity to get some consistent playing time and get his timing and all that, and it hasn't happened."
Cedeno was acquired from the Mets on the eve of the 2004 season for Chris Widger and Wilson Delgado. New York remains on the hook for the bulk of his 2005 salary, regardless of whether Cedeno is claimed by another team, outrighted or released.
Luna made the Cardinals out of Spring Training, but was sent down when St. Louis added Kevin Jarvis to the roster in an attempt to stabilize the bullpen in late April. He takes the spot of Seabol not so much because he's a more valuable player but because of his ability to play shortstop and center field. Luna batted .229/.296/.343 in 210 at-bats for Memphis.
"It's really a tough call because everybody loves Seabol, and he has done a good job," said La Russa. "But there's an edge in versatility there.
"There will be some times against a left-hander where you don't want to start [Abraham] Nunez, because that's not his best side. The other thing is that [Luna] is a more natural outfielder than Seabol. I can play him in center, left and right. So that edge in versatility, when you're trying to win the pennant, that goes against him."
Seabol is a third baseman by trade who also plays second and had been receiving some time in the outfield. With Larry Walker's availability limited and Scott Rolen still not able to play every day, Luna's multi-positional flexibility won out.
Matthew Leach is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.