Veteran catcher Koyie Hill has opted to become a free agent rather than accept an assignment to the Chicago Cubs' Triple-A affiliate, as Doug Padilla of ESPN Chicago reports. The Cubs had designated Hill for assignment last week, and they outrighted him to the minors after he cleared waivers a couple days ago.
Hill, 33, struggled badly over 11 games with Chicago this season, hitting .179 with one double and zero walks in 39 plate appearances. Generally regarded as a defensive specialist behind the plate, few teams would ever be willing to tolerate that kind of offensive production regardless of defensive prowess.
For now, the Cubs still have some solid catching depth in incumbent starter Geovany Soto plus his youthful back-ups, Steve Clevenger and Welington Castillo. When outrighted, Hill was given the option of going to Iowa or hitting free agency, and obviously he chose the latter.
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