Orioles make minor league deal with Johan Santana official

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Johan Santana and the Orioles have finalized their minor-league contract, which was announced just now and will include an invitation to big-league camp.

Santana struggled to top 80 miles per hour while throwing for a half-dozen teams last week, so the odds of him making the Opening Day roster seem awfully slim. There’s some speculation that he could be used as a reliever, but regardless of his role Santana is seemingly destined for some time in extended spring training or the minors.

Santana is attempting to come back from two shoulder surgeries at age 35 after missing all of 2011 and all of 2013, with 117 innings of 4.85 ERA pitching (and a no-hitter) mixed in during 2012. Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com says the deal is worth “$3 million plus performance bonuses” if he reaches the majors.

Brewers to give Mike Moustakas a look at second base

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The Brewers reportedly signed third baseman Mike Moustakas to a one-year, $10 million contract on Sunday. While the deal is not yet official, MLB.com’s Adam McCalvy reports that the Brewers plan to give Moustakas a look at second base during spring training. If all goes well, he will be the primary second baseman and Travis Shaw will stay at third base.

The initial thought was that Moustakas would simply take over at third base for the more versatile Shaw. Moustakas has spent 8,035 of his career defensive innings at third base, 35 innings at first base, and none at second. In fact, he has never played second base as a pro player. Shaw, meanwhile, has spent 268 of his 4,073 1/3 defensive innings in the majors at second base and played there as recently as October.

This is certainly an interesting wrinkle to signing Moustakas, who is a decent third baseman. He was victimized by another slow free agent market, not signing until March last year on a $6.5 million deal with a $15 million mutual option for this season. That option was declined, obviously, and he ended up signing for $5 million cheaper here in February as the Brewers waited him out. Notably, Moustakas did not have qualifying offer compensation attached to him this time around.

Last season, between the Royals and Brewers, the 30-year-old Moustakas hit .251/.315/.459 with 28 home runs and 95 RBI in 635 plate appearances.