Brewers claim Elian Herrera off waivers from Dodgers

Kirby Lee-US PRESSWIRE

The infielder/outfielder plays six positions, and is presumably better than Yuniesky Betancourt at all of them.

The Brewers may have a new utility option for the 2014 roster, as today they claimed infielder/outfielder Elian Herrera off waivers from the Dodgers. The 28-year-old switch hitter is a veteran of 71 MLB games over the last two seasons, including four games with Los Angeles in 2013.

Herrera is a career .251/.336/.328 hitter in the majors, but that sample size is only 222 plate appearances. He's a career .285/.365/.392 hitter in 665 career games in the minors, although 197 of those have come in AAA Albuquerque, one of the best hitters' environments in all of baseball.

Herrera's real value likely comes from the fact that he can play six positions. About half of his minor league games have come at second base, but he's also played all three outfield spots plus shortstop and third. Switch-hitting also makes him a nice bench option. He does appear to hit reasonably well from both sides, as he was better against righties in 2013 but against lefties in 2012 and 2011. He also has an option remaining, so he'll be a useful utility player to have in Nashville even if he doesn't make the Brewers.

With this move, the Brewers have 36 players on their 40-man roster.

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