- Third baseman Brendan Harris is headed to the Tigers on a minor league contract. The 34-year-old has seen action in parts of eight big league seasons, including a run as a regular over 2007-09, but since the close of 2010 has only 117 MLB plate appearances on his ledger. He did put up an interesting .288/.397/.396 slash last year at Triple-A Albuquerque, walking 75 times against just 43 strikeouts.
- The Marlins have inked lefty Tyler Robertson to a minor league pact. Robertson is a 27-year-old lefty who saw 26 innings of big league action over 2012-13 with the Twins. He threw 17 1/3 frames of 4.15 ERA ball last year at Triple-A with the Nationals organization, striking out 7.3 and walking 2.1 per nine.
- The Brewers added catcher Tyler LaTorre on a minor league deal. The 31-year-old had spent his entire nine-year professional career with the Giants, much of it at the Double-A level. After putting up solid numbers over 2011-12 in the upper minors, LaTorre has took a big step backward in 2013 and last year slased .268/.343/.332 in 216 total minor league plate appearances.
Indians right-hander Gavin Floyd, who re-fractured his right olecranon last week, is set to have surgery on Tuesday, tweets Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Floyd, who has pitched sparingly over the past two seasons due to Tommy John surgery and the original olecranon fracture in his right elbow, was expected to serve as a veteran presence in a largely inexperienced Indians rotation after signing a one-year, $4MM deal. Now, however, Cleveland is unlikely to receive any contribution from Floyd this year.
Here’s more from the game’s Central divisions…
- Reds left-hander Tony Cingrani is being shifted from the rotation to the bullpen, tweets John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer. The move comes as somewhat of a surprise, as most figured the left-hander would step into the rotation following the trades of Mat Latos and Alfredo Simon. Cingrani has worked as a starter in the past and racked up excellent strikeout numbers, but he’s had shoulder issues as well, so perhaps the team feels this will keep him healthier. Cuban right-hander Raisel Igesias, meanwhile, will be stretched out to work as a starting pitcher.
- Franklin Morales is building a strong case to take the injured Tim Collins’ spot as a left-hander in the Royals’ bullpen, writes Andy McCullough of the Kansas City Star. Morales has fired six scoreless innings and impressed Kansas City decision-makers. Brandon Finnegan is a well-regarded prospect and could have a shot at making the team, but the team still would like to develop him as a starter and he also hasn’t pitched as well this spring. No final decisions have been made on the situation, writes McCullough.
- The Tigers added another player to camp yesterday when they reportedly signed Jiwan James, and another addition may on the horizon as well. SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo tweets that the team may add veteran infielder Brendan Harris, presumably on a minor league deal. The 34-year-old Harris is a career .256/.314/.381 hitter in the Majors, with his best seasons coming between the Twins and Rays in 2007-08. Harris hasn’t played in the Majors much since 2010, however, receiving just 117 plate appearances with the Angels and hitting .206/.252/.355.
Here are today's minor moves from around baseball.
- The Dodgers have released infielder Brendan Harris, Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish tweets. Harris made 117 plate appearances for the Angels in 2013, posting a line of .206/.252/.355. It had been his first appearance to the Majors since 2010. Previously, he had played for the Cubs, Expos/Nationals, Reds, Rays, and Twins.
- The Mets have announced that they've traded catcher Blake Forsythe to the Athletics for future considerations. Forsythe, 24, hit .192/.271/.362 for Double-A Binghamton in 2013. He was a third-round pick in the 2010 draft out of the University of Tennessee.
We'll keep tabs on the day's minor moves here:
- The Royals announced a series of minor league signings, including for third baseman Brandon Laird, outfielder Paulo Orlando and right-hander Wilking Rodriguez. Laird, 26, is the younger brother of Gerald Laird and joins the Royals from the Astros, where he received major league playing time in 2013. Orlando, 28, is re-upping with the Royals after six seasons in the organization. The 23-year-old Rodriguez will transition to the Royals after seven seasons in the Rays' farm system. He has a career 3.90 ERA, mostly as a starter, but has never reached Double-A.
- Matt Eddy of Baseball America has updates on a number of clubs' minor league signings. Among those with MLB experience (with links to Twitter): The Rockies will return Bobby Cassevah and Matt McBride, and have added righty Greg Burke. Headed to the Tigers is righty Jhan Marinez, while Gorkys Hernandez and Edinson Rincon will stick with the Royals organization. The Phillies have brought back shortstop Andres Blanco. And the Dodgers inked utility infielder Brendan Harris. Other clubs with new signings include the Orioles, Reds, Marlins, White Sox, and Athletics.
- The Cubs have signed outfielder Casper Wells, according to a tweet from Eddy. The team also added righties Paolo Espino and Carlos Pimentel, along with shortstop Jeudy Valdez. Wells got 102 plate appearances with three different clubs last year, posting a meager .126/.186/.147 line that is perhaps understandable given his constant movement and scant playing time. In 2012, over 316 plate appearances with the Mariners, Wells was good for a .228/.302/.396 slash.
- In addition to bringing back righty Benino Pruneda and catcher Jose Yepez on minor league deals, the Braves have added former Phillies backstop Steven Lerud, tweets Eddy. Lerud appeared in nine games for the Phils between 2012-13. At Triple-A last year, he had an interesting .217/.353/.311 line over 219 plate appearances, as he drew nearly as many walks (35) as he had hits (39).
- Cutting ties with a major international acquisition, the Nationals have released righty Yunesky Maya, Eddy tweets. Washington saw little return on its $6MM investment in Maya, who had been outrighted off of the club's major league roster early in the 2013 season. After struggling in two brief call-ups in 2011-12, Maya's last stint with the Nats was even more regrettable. In his only MLB appearance of the 2013 season, Maya retired one batter in the bottom of the tenth before surrendering a walk-off home run to Pablo Sandoval.
- The Cubs have released outfielder Dave Sappelt, tweets Eddy. As Eddy notes, Sappelt was one of the pieces — along with lefty Travis Wood and second baseman Ronald Torreyes — picked up by Chicago in the deal that sent Sean Marshall to Cincinnati. The 26-year-old Sappelt has a .251/.301/.343 slash line in 274 plate appearances spread over the 2011-13 seasons. He has spent most of his time in Triple-A over that time frame, and posted a sub-.700 OPS in each of his two years at Iowa.
The Dodgers have signed Brendan Harris to a minor league contract with an invitation to Spring Training, MLBTR's Tim Dierkes has learned. Harris, a client of RMG Baseball, will earn $700K if he makes the Major League club.
Harris, 33, appeared in 44 games for the Angels and totaled 117 plate appearances in 2013, slashing .206/.252/.355 with four homers. HIs appearance in Anaheim marked his first big league action since 2010 with the Twins, where he was a semi-regular player for parts of the 2008-09 seasons.
Harris was one of the players Minnesota acquired from the Rays in the Matt Garza trade, and he enjoyed reasonable success between Tampa and Minneapolis as a part-timer from 2007-09, hitting .272/.328/.400 with 25 homers in 390 games. Harris has experience at all four infield positions, and he's logged 899 or more innings at third base, shortstop and second base.
The Rangers announced that they have signed Brendan Harris to a minor league contract. The veteran infielder had a cup of coffee in the Yankees' system before signing with Texas today. Harris will help provide extra infield depth for the Rangers who have been thin since Leury Garcia was traded to the White Sox in the Alex Rios trade.
Harris, who celebrates his 33rd birthday on Monday, signed with the Yankees on July 26th and hit just .233/.356/.315 with one homer in 22 games. Prior to that, Harris was batting .206/.252/.355 in 117 plate appearances this year for the Angels. The veteran has big league experience at all four infield positions with the bulk of it at shortstop. Harris, who last saw regular action in 2009 with the Twins, is a career .256/.314/.381 hitter.
Here are today's minor moves…
- The Yankees have signed infielder Brendan Harris, and have assigned him to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, writes Bryan Hoch of MLB.com (on Twitter). The Angels recently designated Harris for assignment, and he cleared waivers and became a free agent. Harris hit .206/.252/.355 in 107 at bats for the Angels this season.
- Former top prospect Brandon Wood has been released by the Orioles, according to Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com (Twitter link). Wood, 28, was ranked as a Top 10 prospect according to Baseball America prior to the 2006 and 2007 seasons. However, his prodigious power never carried over to the Majors, and strikeouts were a serious problem. In 751 Major League plate appearances, Wood hit just .186/.225/.289, and his .215/.250/.309 batting line in 198 Triple-A plate appearances this season wasn't much better. Wood hasn't appeared in the bigs since 2011.
- The Phillies have announced that catcher Humberto Quintero has cleared waivers and elected free agency after being designated for assignment by the team earlier in the week. In a small sample size of 68 plate appearances, Quintero batted .250/.294/.406 with a pair of homers. The 33-year-old Venezuelan has appeared in parts of 11 Major League seasons with the Astros, Padres, Royals and Phillies.
- Former Cubs right-hander Esmailin Caridad has signed with the Samsung Lions of the Korean Baseball Organization, according to Dan Kurtz of MyKBO.net (on Twitter). The 29-year-old pitched for the Cubs in 2009-10 but hadn't appeared in the Majors since. Caridad has spent the three seasons since pitching between Double-A and Triple-A in the Cubs' organization and has a career ERA of 4.33 with 7.0 K/9 and 3.4 BB/9 in 436 2/3 minor league innings.
- Seven players currently reside in DFA limbo: Ted Lilly of the Dodgers, Billy Buckner of the Angels, Hunter Strickland of the Giants, Brandon Inge of the Pirates, Carlos Pena and Ronny Cedeno of the Astros, and Chris Dickerson of the Orioles.
Charlie Wilmoth contributed to this post.
TUESDAY: Harris has cleared waivers and elected to become a free agent rather than accept an outright assignment to Triple-A, the Angels' communications department announced (via Twitter).
SATURDAY: The Angels have designated infielder Brendan Harris for assignment, team communications director Eric Kay announced via Twitter. The team has recalled infielder Tommy Field in a corresponding move, Kay adds.
Harris, 32, was batting .206/.252/.355 in 117 plate appearances this year for the Angels. He has major league experience with all four infield positions, though he's spent the most time at shortstop. A career .256/.314/.381 hitter, Harris last saw regular action in 2009 with the Twins.
Some minor league deals from around the baseball world…
- The Blue Jays have signed right-hander Neil Wagner to a minor league contract with an invite to Spring Training, MLBTR has learned. Wagner has a 3.77 ERA, 2.95 K:BB ratio and 10.2 K/9 rate in 312 career minor league relief appearances in the Padres, A's, and Indians' systems, plus pitched five Major League innings with Oakland in 2011.
- The Angels signed Billy Buckner, Luke Carlin, Brendan Harris, Trent Oeltjen, Jo-Jo Reyes and J.B. Shuck to minor league contracts with invites to the Major League Spring Training camp, reports MLB.com's Alden Gonzalez.
- The Nationals have signed infielder Will Rhymes to a minor league contract with a Spring Training invite, reports the Beverly Hills Sports Council's Twitter page. (Rhymes is represented by the BHSC.) Rhymes was designated for assignment by Tampa Bay in September and has a .266/.328/.343 line in 449 career plate appearances over three seasons with the Tigers and Rays.
- Matt Eddy of Baseball America recaps the week's minor league transactions, including news of Brandon Wood signing a minor league deal with the Royals. Wood, the former Angels third baseman who was once considered one of the top prospects in the game, last appeared in the Majors with the Pirates in 2011 and posted a .722 OPS for the Rockies' Triple-A team in 2012.
The latest minor moves…
- The White Sox have agreed to sign catcher Damaso Espino to a minor league deal that includes an invitation to MLB Spring Training, MLBTR has learned. The 28-year-old posted a .292/.347/.381 line in 224 plate appearances for the Dodgers' Triple-A affiliate in 2011.
- The Rockies announced that they signed infielder Brendan Harris and catcher Jose Gonzalez to minor league deals (Twitter link). Harris, 31, spent the 2011 season with the Orioles' top affiliate, where he posted a .225/.282/.331 line with ten home runs in 565 plate appearances. The seven-year veteran has MLB experience at all four infield positions.
- The Indians announced that they signed infielder Argenis Reyes and right-hander Willy Lebron to minor league deals that don't include invitations to big league Spring Training. The club also confirmed the signing of infielder Chin-lung Hu to a minor league deal. Reyes started the 2011 season in indy ball then signed a minor league deal with the Indians in August. The 29-year-old has MLB experience with the Mets. Lebron, 32, posted a 3.02 ERA with 9.9 K/9 and 4.2 BB/9 in 65 2/3 innings in the upper levels of the Royals' system last year.