OAKLAND, Calif. - The Oakland A's agreed to terms with infielder Nick Punto on a one-year contract for the 2014 season with a vesting option for 2015, the club announced today.
Punto batted .255 with two home runs and 21 RBI in 116 games with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2013. He started 33 games at shortstop, 21 at second base and 17 at third base. The 36-year-old switch hitter batted .309 against left-handed pitching compared to .228 against right-handers. Punto also went 2-for-6 (.333) with a double in five NLCS games against St. Louis.
Punto is a .248 career hitter in 13 seasons with Philadelphia (2001-03), Minnesota (2004-10), St. Louis (2011), Boston (2012) and the Dodgers (2012-13). He was drafted by the Phillies in the 21st round of the 1998 draft but appeared in just 77 games over three seasons before he was traded to the Twins following the 2003 campaign. Punto had his best season with Minnesota in 2006 when he batted a career-high .290 with a career-best 45 RBI. He signed free agent deals with the Cardinals and Red Sox before he was traded to the Dodgers in a nine-player trade Aug. 25, 2012. Punto has played every position except pitcher and catcher in his career and has seen his most action at third base (358 games), second base (356) and shortstop (320). He was a member of the 2011 World Champion St. Louis Cardinals and has appeared on a postseason roster five times in his career.