According to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, the Dodgers have signed veteran utility man Alfredo Amezaga to a minor league contract. The deal includes an invite to spring training.
Amezaga, who turns 35 later this month, hasn’t appeared in the majors since 2011 as a member of the Marlins. The switch-hitter spent all of last season with the Cubs’ Triple-A affiliate, where he batted .274/.336/.372 with six home runs, 42 RBI, 12 stolen bases and a .707 OPS in 113 games.
Amezaga was previously a non-roster invitee with the Dodgers in 2010 following microfracture on his left knee, but he didn’t end up playing a regular season game with the club. With experience between both middle infield spots and center field, he could be in the mix for a super-sub role during spring training, but he’ll likely serve as organizational depth.
Blue Jays closer Ken Giles hasn’t exactly turned things around since joining the Blue Jays on July 31, when the club sent embattled closer Roberto Osuna to the Astros. Giles posted a 4.99 ERA in 30 2/3 innings with the Astros, then put up a slightly less miserable 4.58 ERA in 17 2/3 innings with the Jays. Still, he’s much happier with the Jays than he was with the Astros, even after winning the World Series with them last year. He said to Rosie DiManno of the Toronto Star, “I’m actually enjoying the game more than I did for my entire tenure in Houston. It’s kind of weird to say that because I won a World Series with that team. But it’s like, I just felt trapped there. I didn’t feel like myself there. Overall, I felt out of place.”
Giles also said “the communication was lost” with the Astros and it was something that came easy with the Jays. He said, “When I came here, they stayed patient with me. I said hey, I want to work on this thing till I’m comfortable. All right. OK, I’m comfortable, let’s move on to this next thing. Pitching, you can’t just try to fix everything at once. For me, I had to take baby steps to get my groove back. The Jays allowed me to do that. Yeah, the team was out of contention, but it doesn’t matter. It’s still my career. I still have to prove myself. Them being so patient with me, understanding what I want to do, was very, very big.”
Giles, 28, has two more years of arbitration eligibility remaining. He has shown promise despite his overall mediocre numbers. In non-save situations this season (with both the Astros and Jays), he has a 9.12 ERA. But in save situations, his ERA is a pristine 0.38. Giles could be a closer the Jays find themselves leaning on as they attempt to get back into competitive shape. Since it sounds like Giles is quite enamored with Toronto and with the Blue Jays, a discussion about a contract extension certainly could be had.