Some minor signings from around the game as Wednesday night winds down…
- The Twins signed veteran right-hander Jim Miller to a minor league deal, per Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press (Twitter link). The 34-year-old was a solid member of the Athletics’ bullpen back in 2012 (2.59 ERA in 48 2/3 innings) but has seen scarce MLB action since — most recently with the Yankees in 2014. Miller has a 3.48 ERA in 67 2/3 innings as a Major Leaguer and figures to head to Triple-A as a depth option for the Twins following a very strong showing in the independent Atlantic League last year. Miller fired 25 shutout innings and posted a 24-to-2 K/BB ratio for the Somerset Patriots.
- The Twins also added another player from the indy circuit, purchasing the contract of outfielder Leandro Castro from the Can-Am League’s Rockland Boulders, as the Boulders announced yesterday. The 27-year-old Castro, a former Phillies farmhand, saw his career sputter at the Triple-A level in 2013-14 but has turned in a consecutive pair of excellent seasons in independent ball. Castro hit .322/.364/.530 with 13 homers and 21 steals for the New Jersey Jackals of the Can-Am League in 2015 and batted a combined .316/.355/.524 between the American Association’s Laredo Lemurs and the aforementioned Boulders this past season. Though he never generated all that much prospect fanfare, Castro did rank in the back third of the Phillies’ top 30 prospects from 2009-11, per Baseball America. BA rated him 24th in the Phillies system prior to the 2012 season and pegged him as a fourth outfielder with solid-average speed but not enough bat to profile in a corner slot.
- FOX’s Ken Rosenthal tweets that right-hander Jaye Chapman has inked a minors pact with the Rangers. While he won’t get an invite to Major League Spring Training, Chapman will function as a Triple-A depth piece for a deep Texas bullpen. Chapman hasn’t pitched in the Majors since 2012 in large part due to a rare genetic condition — femoroacetabular impingement in both hips — that caused considerable damage to the tissue surrounding the head of his thigh bones (as MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy chronicled back in 2014). Chapman told McCalvy then that doctors who examined his hips said “it was like somebody had taken a razor blade to my labrums,” adding that if untreated, the condition could’ve resulted in hip replacements before his 30th birthday. Chapman has a career 4.21 ERA with 9.7 K/9 against 4.3 BB/9 in parts of five Triple-A seasons and will turn 30 next May.