Nationals sign Tony Gwynn, Jr.

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The Nationals have agreed to terms with outfielder Tony Gwynn, Jr. on a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Gwynn appeared in 80 games with the Phillies last season, but he struggled in limited playing time, putting up a .152/.264/.190 batting line across 127 plate appearances. He also lost his father, Hall of Famer Tony Gwynn, last June. The 32-year-old owns a .238 batting average and a .619 OPS across 685 games in the majors, but he offers speed and experience at all three outfield positions.

As Mark Zuckerman of CSNWashington.com notes, Gwynn will function as insurance with Jayson Werth and Nate McLouth each rehabbing from shoulder surgery.

Cubs acquire Martín Maldonado from the Royals

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Last night Cubs catcher Willson Contreras was placed on the injured list with a strained muscle in his right foot. That injury inspired the Cubs to go out and get another catcher. They acquired Martín Maldonado in a trade with Kansas City in exchange for lefty Mike Montgomery, in a deal that was announced after the Cubs loss to the Reds.

Maldonado, 32, was a Gold Glove winner in 2017 with the Angels. At the moment he’s hitting .227 with six homers and 17 RBIs in 74 games. Obviously, though, defense is his calling card, as he’s a .220 career hitter with 57 homers and 210 RBIs in 686 games.

Montgomery, 30, is 1-2 with a 5.67 ERA in 20 relief appearances for the Cubs this year. He’s heading back to where his pro career began. He was drafted by Kanas City in 2008, though he was traded away in the James Shields/Wade David/Wil Myers deal in 2012. He made his big league debut for Seattle in 2015. Dayton Moore said last night that the Royals plan to use Montgomery in the rotation as a replacement for Homer Bailey, who was dealt to Oakland on Sunday.