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Cubs sign Peter Bourjos to minor league deal

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The Chicago Cubs have signed outfielder Peter Bourjos to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training.

The book on Bourjos is the same as it ever was: he’s fast and plays good outfield defense — though not as good at 30 as he did when he was younger — but he can’t hit enough to stick as a regular. Last year he hit a mere .223/.272/.383 in 203 plate appearances.

He’ll be 31 when Opening Day rolls around. He’ll try to make it as a fifth outfielder for the Cubs but, if I had to guess, I’d say that he’ll either be heading to Iowa on that day or will have been released to see if he can’t make another club’s 25-man roster.

Rays acquire C.J. Cron from Angels

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The Rays have acquired first baseman C.J. Cron from the Angels for a player to be named later, the teams announced Saturday. In a corresponding move, the Rays cleared a roster spot for Cron by designating outfielder Corey Dickerson for assignment.

Cron wasn’t expected to factor prominently in the Angels’ plans for 2018, especially given the recent addition of pitcher/hitter Shohei Ohtani and the projected Luis Valbuena/Albert Pujols combo at first base. The 28-year-old infielder wasn’t overly impressive during his fourth season in Anaheim, either, slashing .248/.305/.437 with 16 home runs and 0.5 fWAR through 373 plate appearances in 2017. He’ll give the Rays a platoon option with fellow first baseman Brad Miller, though neither Cron nor Miller have looked particularly adept against left-handed pitching lately.

Dickerson, meanwhile, is coming off of a banner season with the Rays. The 29-year-old outfielder enjoyed his first All-Star nomination in 2017, rounding out the year with a .282/.325/.490 batting line and career-best 27 home runs and 2.6 fWAR in 629 PA. Some have already speculated that a trade is in the works; barring that, it’s a head-scratching move to make considering his clear offensive value to the team.