The 35 year old Pena was recently released by the Houston Astros after hitting .209/.324/.350 with 8 HR 25 RBI in 325 plate appearances. He drew 43 walks which would tie Alex Gordon for second on the Royals. Pena has slumped the last two years, posting a below average OPS. He has also hit under the Mendoza Line twice since 2010, although in 2010 he hit enough home runs and drew enough walks to be average.
Pena was given a $2.9 million deal with Houston, but since he cleared waivers upon his release, the Royals are only obligated to pay the prorated league minimum.
Pena was once one of the more feared hitters in the league with Tampa Bay. He led the league in home runs in 2009 with 39, and three times has eclipsed 30 home runs. He has also drawn over 100 walks in a season twice. Most of his success came after he was picked uip by the Rays as a minor league free agent after being let go by several teams. You may also remember him as the rookie slugger traded in the middle of the movie "Moneyball" for inexplicably no reason because that was a terrible, awful movie.
The club has assigned him to Omaha, so at least he gets to help one team with their playoff push.