Here are the day’s minor moves:
- Two players are joining the Orioles on minor-league deals, per a club announcement. Outfielder Michael Choice and corner infielder Juan Francisco both signed on, though it’s not clear whether either has received an invitation to MLB camp. Choice, 27, is a former top prospect who has struggled in his limited chances at the MLB level and hit .246/.304/.456 in 276 Triple-A plate appearances last year. Meanwhile, it’s a return to the affiliated ranks for Francisco, who’s still just 29 years old. He hasn’t seen the majors since 2014, when he did manage above-average overall production despite a typically subpar on-base percentage, and did not play in 2016 after a brief stint in Japan during the prior season. (Note: Francisco’s signing was first reported yesterday, as we covered here.)
- The Orioles also outrighted catcher Francisco Pena after he cleared waivers, as Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com first reported on Twitter. Pena, 27, scuffled in limited MLB action but will still enter camp with at least a shot at winning a reserve role on the Opening Day roster. The out-of-options backstop owns a .248/.294/.453 batting line in extensive Triple-A action and is regarded as a solid defender.
- Also outrighted was right-hander Deolis Guerra, who’ll head to Triple-A for the Angels (though as Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register notes on Twitter, he can still reject the assignment). The 27-year-old was recently dropped from the 40-man in favor of another reliever, but the club will get to keep both options on hand. Last year, Guerra contributed 53 1/3 frames of 3.21 ERA ball with 6.1 K/9 and an excellent 1.2 BB/9 for Los Angeles, but the soft-tossing control artist doesn’t seem to have generated much interest from other organizations.
- Finally, the Blue Jays have outrighted lefty Chad Girodo after he cleared waivers, per a club announcement. Recently designated, the 26-year-old will hope to earn his way back to the majors after making his debut in 2016. He did generate grounders at a healthy clip last year, but struggled in his 10 1/3 MLB frames and managed only a 3.79 ERA with 6.1 K/9 and 3.3 BB/9 in his 35 2/3 innings at Triple-A.