Update: He’ll earn $1.3 million, tweets Rosenthal.
11:53 am: Many expected one to follow the other, and true to form, after Orlando Cabrera signed with the Reds, the Rockies inked Melvin Mora to a one-year contract, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com. Terms of the contract aren’t yet available.
Mora, who turns 38 next month, batted .260/.321/.358 with eight home runs and 48 RBI in tumultuous year with the Orioles last season. He battled with manager Dave Trembley after being benched and went over two months without hitting a home run. Nobody wanted to take a chance on his fading production as a starting player, so he’ll have to embrace the role of a utility man, similar to the early days of his major league career with the Mets and Orioles.
Remember Manny Banuelos? He was once a top pitching prospect for the Yankees and then, apparently disappeared from the face of the earth. Or at least it felt like it. Now he’s in the news, however, as the Dodgers have signed him to a minor league contract.
OK, Banuelos didn’t disappear. He was traded to the Braves in 2015, had a cup of coffee with them, pitching pretty ineffectively in seven big league games, was released by Atlanta in the middle of 2016 and then latched on with the Angels. This past season he posted a 4.93 ERA over 95 innings while being used mostly as a reliever at Triple-A Salt Lake.
Banuelos pitched in the Future’s Game in 2009 and was a star in the Arizona Fall League in 2010. He was a top-50 prospect heading into 2011 before falling to Tommy John surgery in 2012. With Atlanta he suffered some bone spur problems and then some elbow issues that never resulted in surgery but which never subsided enough for him to fulfill his potential either. He suffered injuries. A lot of pitchers do.
It’s unrealistic to think that Banuelos will fulfill the promise he had six years ago, but he’s worth a minor league deal to see if the 26-year-old can at least be a serviceable reliever.