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"We wanted to try to get as many alternatives as we could to help," Indians president of baseball operations Chris Antonetti said earlier this week.
Right now, Cleveland's projected outfield would include Lonnie Chisenhall in right field and Abraham Almonte in center. This offseason, the Indians have also acquired Joey Butler (claimed from Tampa Bay) and Collin Cowgill (via trade from the Angels) as possible backup options. Grossman joins Shane Robinson and Michael Choice on list of non-roster outfielders with Spring Training invites.
In parts of the past three seasons with the Astros, the 26-year-old Grossman has hit .240/.327/.341 in 190 games. The switch-hitter had a .254 average to go along with a .354 on-base percentage, 22 extra-base hits, 37 RBIs, 54 runs and 14 steals in 93 games with Triple-A Fresno last year. He hit .143 in 24 Major League games last year with Houston, which released him on Nov. 19.
Grossman has experience at all three outfield positions, but he rates better as a corner outfielder, especially in right field. In 278 2/3 innings in right in the Majors, the outfielder has six Defensive Runs Saved and a 28.9 UZR/150, per Baseball Reference and Fangraphs, respectively. Grossman has posted average defensive numbers in left and below-average numbers in center in his limited big league action.
Also invited: The Indians also signed right-hander Felipe Paulino to a Minor League contract with a non-roster Spring Training invite on Friday. The 32-year-old pitcher has gone 13-34 with a 5.22 ERA in 97 games (65 starts) in parts of six Major League seasons from 2007-14 with the Astros, Rockies, Royals and White Sox. In '15, he went 5-9 with a 4.93 ERA in 20 starts for Triple-A Iowa in the Cubs' system.
Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, follow him on Twitter @MLBastian and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.