Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the Marlins are close to signing first baseman/corner outfielder Garrett Jones, who was let go by the Pirates last week.
Jones lost his job to Justin Morneau down the stretch and the Pirates didn’t want to pay him around $5 million via arbitration. Why the Marlins want him is sort of unclear, because Jones is a mediocre 33-year-old coming off a career-worst season in which he hit just .233 with 15 homers and a .708 OPS in 144 games.
Signing him would clear the path for Miami to trade Logan Morrison and perhaps that deal could bring back some long-term help in the form of young talent, but a Morrison-for-Jones switch isn’t likely to help the lineup any in the short term.
UPDATE: Juan C. Rodriguez of the South Florida Sun Sentinel reports that Jones is getting a two-year, $7.5 million deal.
The Orioles have re-signed infielder Pedro Alvarez to a minor league deal, per a report from Roch Kubatko of MASN Sports. The deal guarantees Alvarez $1 million if he makes the 40-man roster and another $2 million in potential performance bonuses. The team has yet to confirm the deal.
This will be Alvarez’s third year with the Orioles. After posting decent numbers in 2016, the 31-year-old was relegated to the minors for the majority of the 2017 season and saw only 14 games at the big league level. He finished the year with an underwhelming .239/.294/.442 batting line and 26 home runs through 595 plate appearances for Triple-A Norfolk.
Alvarez is expected to split his time between first base and DH this spring, and MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli notes that he’s unlikely to experiment with another outfield role. While he isn’t too far removed from his last productive season in the majors, the veteran infielder will function purely as insurance for first baseman Chris Davis and designated hitter Mark Trumbo and will likely begin the season in the minors.