The Phillies have re-signed veteran utilityman Andrew Romine to a minor league pact, tweets Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia. He’s in Major League camp today and will head to minor league camp tomorrow before opening the season in the minors (presumably with Philadelphia’s Triple-A affiliate in Lehigh Valley).
Philadelphia released Romine late last week, but this new arrangement allows them to keep him without paying him the $100K retention bonus he’d have been due as an Article XX(B) Free Agent (essentially — a player with six-plus years of MLB service who finished the previous season on a Major League roster but took a minor league pact in the offseason). That may sound harsh, though it’s a rather common practice in this type of instance.
Romine, 33, doesn’t bring much to the table offensively, but few in the league can match his defensive versatility. He’s played every position on the field at the MLB level and has at least 200 big league innings at each of first base, second base, third base, shortstop, corner outfield (left and right combined) and in center field. Romine appeared in 17 games with the Phils earlier this spring and hit .270/.325/.378 through 40 plate appearances. He’s a career .235/.291/.301 hitter in 1323 Major League plate appearances and has a .721 OPS in more than 3000 career trips to the plate in Triple-A.