Shawn Riggans Rumors


Minor Deals: Stokes, Diaz, Barton, Brewers

Rounding up today's minor signings:

  • The Blue Jays signed Brian Stokes, according to Matt Eddy of Baseball America (on Twitter). The 31-year-old struggled through 16 2/3 innigns for the Angels last year, but was useful for the Mets from 2008-09 before they sent him to L.A. for Gary Matthews Jr..
  • The A's signed right-hander Jonathan Ortiz, who combined a sinker and an above-average changeup to post 11.8 K/9 in the Yankees system this year, according to Eddy (all links go to Twitter).
  • The Tigers signed shortstop Argenis Diaz, who was non-tendered by the Pirates despite his strong glovework.
  • The Angels signed Ryan Braun - not the Brewers slugger, but the 30-year-old right-hander who posted a 2.20 ERA with 9.6 K/9 and 5.3 BB/9 in 57 1/3 innings at Triple-A Charlotte last year. He last pitched in the majors for the 2007 Royals.
  • The Twins signed Matt Brown, a former Angel who should provide corner infield depth.
  • The Pirates re-signed Tyler Yates, who missed last season as he recovered from Tommy John surgery.
  • Brian Barton, who hit 19 homers and stole 18 bases in the Atlantic League this year, signed with the Reds, according to Eddy (on Twitter).
  • The Cubs signed lefty Polin Trinidad, who posted a 4.81 ERA with 5.6 K/9 and 2.4 BB/9 in 149 2/3 innings in the upper minor for the Astros last year (Twitter link).
  • The Brewers signed Edwin Maysonet and Shawn Riggans to minor league deals and invited them to Spring Training, according to Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (on Twitter). Maysonet, 29, appeared in 46 games as a backup infielder for the Astros in 2008-09 and hit .248/.308/.329 in 356 minor league plate apperances last year. Riggans, who spent parts of four seasons with the Rays, barely played in 2010.
  • The Twins inked lefty Chuck James, tweets Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus.  The 29-year-old former Brave had rotator cuff surgery in September of 2008.
  • The Nationals announced seven signings, including previously unreported contracts for Ryan Mattheus, Michael Aubrey, and Brian Bixler.  Mattheus, a 27-year-old right-handed reliever, was acquired by the Nats at the '09 trade deadline in the Joe Beimel deal, the same month he had Tommy John surgery.  His is a Major League deal.  Aubrey, drafted 11th overall by the Indians in 2003, hit .235/.310/.495 at Triple-A this year.  Bixler, a defensive-minded utility infielder, was acquired by Washington from the Pirates in August.



Zaun Has Torn Labrum, Could Retire

Gregg Zaun has a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder, and may retire if the injury persists, according to MLB.com's Adam McCalvy. Zaun says there's a 50-50 chance he plays this season. We'll know more in two to four weeks, when doctors re-evaluate Zaun's shoulder.

The Brewers currently have catchers Jonathan Lucroy and George Kottaras on their active roster. Lucroy has appeared in two big league games and Kottaras has appeared in 67, so it would not be a surprise to see the Brewers pursue a veteran catcher. Lucroy, who is a highly-regarded prospect, made his big league debut last Friday. Baseball America said Lucroy "projects as a good offensive threat for a catcher" when they ranked him fifth among Brewers prospects before the season. Kottaras has a respectable .238/.357/.442 line in 182 big league plate appearances.

If the Brewers decide to look outside the organization for catching depth, they could call free agent Shawn Riggans, ask the Rockies about Paul Phillips or ask the Phillies about Paul Hoover.



Odds & Ends: Anderson, Penny, Mariners, Zito

Links for Tuesday, as J.J. Hardy hits the disabled list...



Mets Sign Shawn Riggans

In a press release, the Mets have announced the signing of catcher Shawn Riggans to a minor league contract with an invite to spring training.

Riggans had a rough 2009, hitting .143 in seven major league games with Tampa Bay, and posting just a .233/.298/.314 line in three minor league stops. Clearly, his right shoulder tendinitis played a role.

As recently as 2007, he posted strong minor league numbers, but there is little reason to expect Riggans to be much of an upgrade at catcher for the Mets. Still, when the starter is likely Omir Santos, a career minor leaguer, it is understandable that the Mets are bringing in some extra competition.



Players Tendered Contracts

Midnight ET is the non-tender deadline, so we'll keep track of all the players who are offered and/or agreed to contracts today in this post. Keep coming back throughout the day for updates.









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