Chris Snyder joins Nationals on minor league contract


Injuries have derailed what was a pretty solid career for Chris Snyder and the 32-year-old catcher must not have drawn much interest as a free agent because Jerry Crasnick of reports that he signed a minor-league deal with the Nationals.

Washington was already facing a playing time crunch behind the plate with Kurt Suzuki and Wilson Ramos, so there isn’t much opportunity for Snyder to crack the roster and carve out a role unless Ramos struggles to come back from the knee injury that ended his 2012 season.

Snyder was the Diamondbacks’ starting catcher from 2005-2010, posting a .737 OPS in 556 games, but he’s hit just .195 for the Pirates and Astros during the past two-and-half seasons while struggling with back problems.

Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for Red Sox

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No surprise here: Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for the Red Sox, Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports. The Red Sox open the season on March 29 in Tampa Bay against the Rays. Sale will oppose Chris Archer.

Sale, 28, is the fifth different Opening Day starter the Red Sox have had in as many years, preceded by Rick Porcello, David Price, Clay Buchholz, and Jon Lester. Sale started on Opening Day for the White Sox in 2013, ’14, and ’16.

Sale finished second in AL Cy Young Award balloting last year and finished ninth for AL MVP. He went 17-8 with a 2.90 ERA and a 308/43 K/BB ratio in 214 1/3 innings. Sale and Clayton Kershaw (2015) are the only pitchers to strike out 300 or more batters in a season dating back to 2003.