A’s sign rehabbing reliever Eric O’Flaherty

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Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the A’s have continued to overhaul their bullpen by signing left-hander Eric O’Flaherty to a two-year, $7 million deal.

O’Flaherty underwent Tommy John elbow surgery in July and likely won’t be game-ready before midseason, so it’s definitely a risky move. However, before blowing out his elbow he was an excellent setup man for the Braves, posting a 1.99 ERA in 249 innings from 2009-2013.

Oakland’s bullpen already included new closer Jim Johnson, plus Ryan Cook, Luke Gregerson, and Sean Doolittle. It has the potential to be a helluva relief corps, but the A’s have invested a lot of money and resources into the late innings.

Report: Twins sign Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal

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The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.

Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.

Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.