The Diamondbacks have inked utilityman Wilmer Difo to a minor league deal, FanSided’s Robert Murray reports (via Twitter). Difo receives an invitation to Arizona’s big league spring camp as part of the contract.
Difo hit .269/.329/.384 over 240 plate appearances with the Pirates last season, appearing in 116 games after signing another minors contract last winter. It marked the first time Difo had ever played outside the Nationals organization, as Difo had spent his entire 11-year pro career with Washington since D.C. signed him to an amateur contract out of the Dominican Republic in 2010.
That stint in the District resulted in 373 big league games spread over the 2015-20 seasons, with Difo seeing a lot of time as a starting shortstop when Trea Turner was injured in 2017 and 2019, and as part of a second base platoon in 2018. Known more for his versatility than his switch-hitting production at the plate, Difo hit .247/.309/.348 over 1060 PA in a Nationals uniform. While he didn’t appear on the postseason roster in 2019, Difo’s 43 games played for the Nats that season earned him a World Series ring for his contribution to the championship year.
Difo has spent much of his career at the two middle infield positions, but has also played a good deal of third base and at least a couple of games at all three outfield positions. The D’Backs don’t have much in the way of veteran utility players competing for jobs on the MLB roster, so Difo’s experience could give him an edge in competing for a roster spot.