Jerad Head's career minor league line: .270/.341/.473
Lastoria reported the news via Twitter and it's not much of a surprise. Head is an interesting story (or might be if anyone told it well)—he played his college ball at Washburn University, a Division II school in Head's hometown of Topeka, KS. Washburn's men's athletic teams are nicknamed The Ichabods. After not being selected in the draft, Head signed with the Indians as a free agent and bounced around the farm system for five seasons. Before his major league debut this season, Head was most notable for being charged with assault, along with Beau Mills and Josh Tomlin, outside of an Akron nightclub called Whiskey Dick's.
Head finally made the Indians roster late last year, as an injury replacement for Michael Brantley (and Trevor Crowe, and Grady Sizemore, and Shin-Soo Choo, etc, etc). He debuted on August 28th, his 29th birthday, playing left field and batting ninth. His limited time with the Tribe did nothing to disprove what his minor league track record showed: Head is a fringe major leaguer at absolute best. He was DFA'ed when Crowe was healthy enough to play.
The Indians have serious issues with outfield depth going into 2012—the assumed starters, Brantley, Sizemore, and Choo, are all coming off major injuries and their backups, Carrera, Crowe, Duncan, and Neal, are all players trying to prove they belong at the highest level. Even with these limited outfield options, the Indians chose to part ways with Head, who will try to add to his 25 major league plate appearances while playing with the Tigers. Detroit has outfield issues of its own but Head will need to catch multiple breaks. He's signed to a minor league contract, meaning the Tigers would have to clear room on their forty man roster to call Head to the majors. Regardless of whether he ever plays topside again, Head has already beaten incredibly long odds by going from undrafted free agent to major league player—although, oddly, Brian Barton, another Indians UDFA born in 1982 and playing outfield, pulled the same trick two years before Head did.