Free agent second baseman Dan Uggla signed a minor league contract with the San Francisco Giants earlier today after being cut by the Atlanta Braves on July 18th. Uggla was originally drafted by the Arizona Diamondbacks, but began his major league career with the Florida Marlins after being selected by them in the 2006 rule 5 draft. Uggla averaged 30 home runs and 90 RBI's in his first five major league seasons with Florida. He was a two-time all star with the Marlins including a 2006 rookie campaign in which he hit 27 home runs and drove in 90 runs. Uggla is believed to be the first major league player to make an all star team the same year that he was selected in a rule 5 draft. He also currently holds the Marlins franchise record for most career home runs with 154.
After rejecting a four-year offer from the Marlins in 2010, Uggla was traded to the Atlanta Braves where he signed a 5-year $62 million deal. At first it looked as if though Uggla would be worth the $62 million as he had a 33-game hitting streak during the 2011 season and was named the starting second baseman for the National League all star team in 2012. The 33-game hitting streak set an Atlanta Braves franchise record. Unfortunately, Uggla was unable to keep up this level of play and his production decreased drastically over the next two years. He was hitting just .162 with 2 home runs through 48 games at the time of his release on Friday.
Uggla will start his stint with the Giants at triple-a Fresno. If he can prove that he is capable of producing at the major league level again then he likely will get a call up to San Francisco when the MLB rosters expand to 40 players in September. The Giants however, certainly would not mind if Uggla shows he is MLB ready sooner as they can use an extra bat on their roster with the recent loss of first baseman Brandon Belt to a concussion.