Former Red Sox infielder Jonathan Arauz has been claimed off waivers by the Orioles, the team announced on Wednesday afternoon. Boston had designated Arauz for assignment last Friday in order to create a spot on both the 26- and 40-man roster for outfielder Rob Refsnyder.
Arauz, who turns 24 in August, joined the Red Sox organization when he was acquired from the Astros in the 2019 Rule 5 Draft. The switch-hitting Panamanian batted .250/.325/.319 with one home run and nine RBIs as a rookie during the pandemic-shortened 2020 campaign.
Over the last two seasons, Arauz was shuttled between Boston and Triple-A Worcester on a consistent basis while undertaking a utility role with the big-league club. He appeared in games at second base, third base, and shortstop while providing adequate defense at each position.
After making Boston’s Opening Day roster out of spring training this year, Arauz struggled to find his footing at the plate both in the major- and minor-leagues. In two separate stints and six games with the Red Sox, he went 0-for-10 with one RBI, one run scored, and three strikeouts. With the WooSox, the 23-year-old batted just .185/.242/.239 across 24 games spanning 99 plate appearances.
Originally signed by the Phillies as an international free agent in 2014, Arauz does have a connection to the Orioles’ front office. When the Phillies dealt Arauz and reliever Ken Giles to the Astros in December 2015, current Baltimore general manager Mike Elias was serving as Houston’s amateur scouting director and had worked his way up to assistant general manager before leaving for the O’s in November 2018.
So, in a sense, Elias is now reunited with Arauz, whose versatility and two minor-league options likely appealed to the Orioles. He has since been optioned to Triple-A Norfolk.
(Picture of Jonathan Arauz: Duane Burleson/Getty Images)