The Angels have signed outfielder Magneuris Sierra and right-hander Kyle Barraclough to minor league contracts, according to Baseball America’s Chris Hilburn-Trenkle. Both players are eligible to be signed during the lockout since they entered the offseason as minor league free agents.
A veteran of five MLB seasons, 2021 saw Sierra receive his most playing time as a major leaguer, as he made 225 plate appearances over 123 games with the Marlins. However, Sierra hit only .230/.281/.268, which roughly matched his slash line over his 315 previous career PA with St. Louis and Miami from 2017-20.
Though consistent hitting was hard to come by even in the minors for Sierra, he was still a well-regarded prospect based on his defensive ability alone, with Baseball Prospectus ranking him as the 56th-best minor leaguer in the game prior to the 2018 season. Sierra came to the Marlins as part of the four-player prospect package the Cardinals sent to the Marlins for Marcell Ozuna back in the 2017-18 offseason, and while he did indeed show some solid glovework at all three outfield positions in his limited big league playing time, the Marlins outrighted him off their 40-man roster at the end of the 2021 campaign.
Sierra will now get an opportunity to earn a backup outfield job in Anaheim, or at least serve as minor league outfield depth at the Angels’ Triple-A affiliate. Sierra will be joined by a former Marlins teammate in Barraclough, as the two were both on Miami’s roster in 2018 — which was also essentially Barraclough’s last effective year as a big league reliever. The righty had a very solid 3.21 ERA and 29.8% strikeout rate over 218 2/3 innings from 2015-18 working out of Miami’s bullpen, if with the warning sign of a 14.3% walk rate.
Since the Marlins traded Barraclough to the Nationals in October 2018, however, he has managed only a 5.59 ERA over 46 2/3 frames, thanks in large part to a big spike in home runs allowed. The past three seasons have been Barraclough pitch at the big league level with the Nats, Giants, and Twins, and he also was briefly a member of the Yankees and Padres organizations on minor league deals. With the Angels in constant need of pitching help, there would seemingly be a path for Barraclough to win a job in their bullpen if he can show some improvement during Spring Training.