Washington continues to add depth, as Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com reports that the Nationals have signed reliever Luis Ayala to a minor-league deal.
Ayala looked pretty washed up five years ago, but somehow stuck around, kept getting jobs, and actually has put together a nice run for the past three seasons with a 2.58 ERA in 164 innings.
At age 36 teams understandably didn’t have much faith in him keeping that up, but for a non-roster invitation to spring training he’s certainly a worthwhile addition for the Nationals.
Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Mariners have signed pitcher Juan Nicasio to a two-year contract, pending a physical.
Nicasio, 31, spent last season with the Pirates, Phillies, and Cardinals, putting up an aggregate 2.61 ERA with a 72/20 K/BB ratio in 72 1/3 innings. He appeared in 76 games, leading the National League.
Nicasio will help bolster the Mariners’ bullpen behind closer Edwin Diaz. It’s not known exactly what role he’ll have but it seems reasonable to assume he’ll handle mostly the seventh inning while Nick Vincent will set up for Diaz. Nicasio does have plenty of starting experience so he could also spot start in a pinch.