Mariners sign Oliver Perez to minor league contract

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From MLB.com’s Greg Johns comes word that the Mariners have signed left-hander Oliver Perez to a minor league contract with an invitation to major league spring training. Yes, that Oliver Perez.

The 30-year-old former Met had a decent showing last year for the Nationals’ Double-A affiliate, posting a 3.09 ERA and 58/27 K/BB ratio across 75 2/3 innings. But he never made it up to the Triple-A level and was never seriously considered for a promotion to the majors despite the Nats’ many pitching failures.

Perez is highly doubtful to land himself a spot on Seattle’s Opening Day roster this spring.

Yadier Molina responds to Willson Contreras on Instagram

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On Monday, Cubs catcher Willson Contreras showed he was very confident heading into the 2018 season, saying, “I know that I’m going to be better than [Yadier Molina and Buster Posey].” Contreras explained that his goal is to become “the best catcher in the game for a long time — like it was with Yadier Molina, like it is with Buster Posey.”

Apparently, Contreras ruffled Molina’s feathers as the Cardinals’ veteran backstop took to Instagram to respond. Posting a picture of himself with Buster Posey and Salvador Perez, Molina wrote, “Respeten los rangos NOVATOS!! aqui con los q si han probao que son los duros!!” That loosely translates to “respect the ranks,” referring to Contreras as a novice.

Molina is no stranger to using Instagram to air his grievances. He apparently used the social media app to take a swipe or two at manager Mike Matheny last year.

Of course, Molina seems to be misreading the intent of Contreras. Contreras seems to think highly of Molina, having referred to him as being one of the best catchers in the game — even if it was in the past tense. Molina should know, being someone who also competes at the highest level, that having confidence is an important part of the recipe for success. Perhaps this will make for some interesting games during the season, breathing new life into the Cubs-Cardinals rivalry.