Phillies close to re-signing backup catcher Brian Schneider

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Philadelphia was apparently satisfied with Brian Schneider backing up Carlos Ruiz for the past two seasons, because Jon Paul Morosi of FOXSports.com reports that the Phillies are close to re-signing the 34-year-old catcher.

Schneider signed a two-year, $2.75 million deal with the Phillies as a free agent in December of 2009, but he’s coming off a career-worst season in which he hit just .176 while throwing out only 13 percent of steal attempts in 41 games playing behind Ruiz.

Ruiz has played at least 100 games and caught at least 800 innings in each of his five full seasons, so the Phillies are willing to settle on Schneider rather than looking for a younger catcher with more upside.

Phillies sign Henderson Alvarez to a minor league deal

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Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Phillies signed pitcher Henderson Alvarez to a minor league deal. If he is added to the major league roster, he’ll earn $750,000 prorated.

Alvarez is still only 27 years old but hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2015 due to shoulder issues. He signed with the Long Island Ducks last month, making seven starts and posting a 3.94 ERA with a 13/14 K/BB ratio in 32 innings.

The Phillies learned that Vince Velasquez will undergo season-ending surgery and also placed Zach Eflin on the 10-day disabled list, so the club is just looking for pitching depth to help take them through the end of the season. Any innings that Alvarez is able to handle will be considered a bonus.

David Wright is going to play in a real game tonight

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Mets third baseman David Wright will begin a minor league rehab assignment Tuesday with High-A St. Lucie. He’ll be the DH.

Wright has been sidelined since May of 2016, first with a cervical disc herniation and, more recently, a shoulder impingement. He has appeared in just 75 games since his last full season in 2014. Wright is under contract through 2020 and is owed $47 million after this year. For now insurance is picking up a large portion of that.

It’s possible he’ll make a return to the Mets before the season out as the competitive portion of their year is basically over and giving him a chance to see big league pitching before he begins what one hopes is a normal offseason might be a good confidence boost. What meaningful role he ever plays in the big leagues again, however, is decidedly up in the air.