Blue Jays sign Jamie Moyer to minor league contract

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In the wake of yet another injury to a starting pitcher Monday, the Blue Jays have signed 49-year-old Jamie Moyer to a minor league contract.

Moyer requested and received his release from the Orioles last week after going 1-1 with a 1.69 ERA in three starts for Triple-A Norfolk. He was 2-5 with a 5.70 ERA before being let go by the Rockies last month. The Blue Jays will send him to Las Vegas for now, though what exactly he has to prove there is anyone’s guess.

The Jays are very shorthanded in the rotation with Brandon Morrow, Kule Drabek and Drew Hutchinson all on the DL, and Henderson Alvarez left Monday’s game against the Red Sox with a sore elbow. If Moyer isn’t of use immediately, he probably won’t look any better in a week or two.

So, it might be that the minor league deal is just a technicality and that he’ll be added to the roster to start this weekend. There isn’t any other reason to have him around.

Tigers sign Josh Thole to minors deal

Josh Thole
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The Tigers signed catcher Josh Thole to a minor league deal, per an announcement from the Double-A Erie SeaWolves on Friday. Thole is expected to report to Double-A Erie, where he’ll split time with starting catcher Jake Rogers.

Thole, 31, has not appeared in a major or minor league game since 2016. He signed a minors deal with the Diamondbacks back in 2017, but was sidelined through most of the season after undergoing hamstring surgery in April. He was released by the team during spring training and failed to catch on with another major league club through the first two months of the 2018 season.

While the veteran backstop hasn’t tested his skills in pro ball for several years now, he held his own during a short-lived run with the independent New Britain Bees of the Atlantic League. Over 17 games in 2018, Thole batted .317/.425/.367 with three extra-base hits and a .791 OPS in 75 plate appearances. He’s expected to serve as catching depth within the Tigers’ organization, but may yet work his way back to the majors if he can get his average back over the Mendoza Line again — a feat he hasn’t managed since 2015.