D’Backs reach two-year, $3M deal with John McDonald

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From Jack Magruder of FOXSportsArizona.com comes word that the Diamondbacks have reached agreement on a two-year, $3 million contract with veteran utility infielder John McDonald.

McDonald batted just .169/.222/.203 in 63 plate appearances after joining Arizona in late August, but he’s still a capable defender at the age of 37 and will provide the Snakes with insurance at shortstop in case Stephen Drew (fractured ankle) isn’t back to 100 percent by Opening Day next April.

McDonald appeared in 26 games at third base, 21 games at second base and 38 games at shortstop during the 2011 season. He’s also seen time in the outfield in recent years.

Tigers sign Edwin Espinal to minor league deal

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Free agent first baseman Edwin Espinal has signed a minor league deal with the Tigers, the infielder announced Saturday. The move has yet to be confirmed by the team.

Espinal, 23, capped a seven-year run with the Pirates’ minor league affiliates in 2017. He split his season between Double-A Altoona and Triple-A Indianapolis, batting a cumulative .294/.327/.447 with 15 home runs and 31 doubles in 532 plate appearances. While he’s raked at nearly every level so far, he also profiles well on defense, and rounded off his 2017 performance with a perfect fielding percentage, 208 putouts and a Gold Glove award.

Espinal is untested at the major league level and it’s not yet clear if he’ll make the jump in 2018. He showed some positional versatility during his time in the minors, however, and could take reps at third base or DH if necessary. The Tigers are reportedly on the lookout for pitching depth and left-handed bats — two bills the right-handed Espinal doesn’t fit — and presumably have a lot of moves left to make this winter.