Rockies trade catcher Miguel Olivo to Jays for PTBNL

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This comes as a bit of a surprise.

Tracy Ringolsby of FOXSports.com reported Wednesday that the Rockies declined catcher Miguel Olivo’s $2.6 million option for 2011 and that the veteran would enter this offseason as a free agent.  That report was apparently incorrect.

The Denver Post’s Troy Renck just tweeted that Olivo has been traded to the Blue Jays for a player to be named later.  And it has now been confirmed by multiple outlets, including Ringolsby.

Toronto will enter 2011 with a logjam of three catchers — Olivo, Jose Molina and J.P. Arencibia.  John Buck is a free agent and is expected to move on in search of a lucrative multi-year contract.

It seems likely that Olivo will be the starter, Molina will be the backup and the 24-year-old Arencibia will be shipped to Triple-A to start the season.  If the youngster continues to make progress, the Jays can move Olivo for a prospect in July and shuffle the depth chart accordingly.

Report: Twins sign Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal

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The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.

Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.

Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.