The Winnipeg Goldeyes signed catcher Luis Alen to a contract for the 2013 season on Friday.
Alen returns to Winnipeg for a fifth season, which makes him the longest serving catcher in Goldeyes history. In 2012, he hit .317 with five home runs and 50 RBI, while striking out just 13 times in 375 at-bats. It's the third time in his four seasons with Winnipeg that he hit above the .300 line. Behind the plate, he threw out 23 per cent of opposing base stealers and matched a career-best .994 fielding percentage.
"He's one of the best duel-threat catchers you'll find in the American Association," said Goldeyes manager Rick Forney. "He really had a tremendous year for us last year and caught a lot of innings. He's really reliable defensively and calls a good game. He's matured behind the plate in terms of game calling, receiving the ball and working with the pitching staff. Offensively, he's a good as you're going to find in terms of a catcher. He makes a lot of contact. He struck out less than 15 times last year, which is astounding."
In the Goldeyes record book, the 27-year-old is second in career doubles with 96, fourth in batting average at .315, games played with 368 and hits with 428 and fifth in at-bats with 1,357.
Alen made his debut in Winnipeg in 2007 and returned in 2010 after two seasons in the New York Mets system. He was originally signed as a free agent by the Florida Marlins and played in their organization from 2003-2005. He played the 2006 season in Italy with Parma.
The Goldeyes now have 12 players signed for the 2013 season, including eight pitchers and four position players.