KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Yankees have claimed infielder Matt Antonelli off waivers from the Orioles.
Antonelli, a first-round pick by the Padres in 2006, was designated for assignment Sunday to make room for outfielder Xavier Avery on the club's 40-man roster.
He was one of Dan Duquette's first signees as Orioles executive vice president of baseball operations, signed Nov. 21 as part of Duquette's effort to improve the club's on-base capabilities.
Antonelli, who was in major league camp with the Orioles this spring competing for the utility position spot evenually won by Rule 5 pick Ryan Flaherty, was hitting .204/.357/.280 in 29 games at Triple-A Norfolk at the time of his designation. He had four doubles, one homer and seven RBIs with 23 strikeouts and 19 walks in 116 plate appearances.
The 17th overal pick in the 2006 draft, Antonelli has played one season in the majors, hitting .193/.292/.281 in 57 at-bats for the Padres. The Yankees will be his fourth organization since 2010.
Antonelli has a minor league option left, so he will likely report to the Yankees' Triple-A team in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.