Report: Braves sign James Loney to a minor league deal

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The Braves have found a new first baseman in the wake of Freddie Freeman‘s injury. Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports that the Braves have signed James Loney to a minor league contract.

Loney, 33, spent last season with the Mets, hitting .265/.307/.397 with nine home runs and 34 RBI in 366 plate appearances while playing solid defense. He was playing in the minors for the Tigers this season, where he hit .229/.387/.250 in 62 plate appearances. He was released by the Tigers on May 7.

Other first base types were available, but Loney performed well enough last year and still plays good enough defense that he works in a pinch for the Braves. If the Braves promote Loney, he could share time at first base with prospect Rio Ruiz, who was called up from Triple-A Gwinnett on Thursday.