The Nationals have announced the signing of infielder Brendan Ryan to a minor league deal. He’ll receive an invitation to major league camp.
It’s been something of an odd offseason thus far for the 33-year-old veteran, who kicked things off by exercising a $1MM player option with the Yankees. But he found himself dealt to the Cubs along with Adam Warren in exchange for Starlin Castro, only to be released shortly thereafter by Chicago — indicating that the organization took on his salary as part of the financial maneuvering in that swap.
Ryan will enter a crowded infield situation in D.C., which already has added fellow former Yankee middle infielder Stephen Drew and second baseman Daniel Murphy this winter. And the Nats already feature Anthony Rendon, Danny Espinosa, and prospects such as Trea Turner and Wilmer Difo.
But the Nationals have a history of trusting roster spots to solid veterans, and Ryan could still have something to offer as a depth option in the team’s utility mix. He only slashed .201/.244/.271 while battling injuries over two seasons in New York and has never really done much at the plate. But Ryan rated as an immensely valuable defender when he featured as a regular shortstop and is capable of playing anywhere in the infield dirt.