Brian Dozier
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Reports: Padres sign Brian Dozier to minors deal

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AJ Cassavell and Robert Murray report that second baseman Brian Dozier has signed with the Padres. It’s a minor league deal, per Murray.

The longtime Twin spent the latter half of 2018 with the Dodgers before signing with the Nationals last year and winning a championship. Dozier, who will be 33 this season, is a former All-Star and a Gold Glove winner. He hit .238/.340/.430 and launched 20 homers for Washington en route to a World Series win, but was largely relegated to a bench role in the playoffs.

San Diego currently has Jurickson Profar penciled in at second base after acquiring him in a trade with the A’s. The organization lacks substantial depth at the position, with Greg Garcia being the primary option. Gordan Beckham is also in camp on a minor league deal. One imagines that Dozier instantly becomes a favorite to make the team, with the addition of the 26th roster spot only helping his case.

Dozier is no longer the impact talent he once was, but he’s still got more than enough baseball left in his bones to help a team like the Padres out. Low-risk signings that raise a team’s talent floor like this often pay off in big ways in the long run.

Also, since this is a Brian Dozier-related post, we’d be remiss if we didn’t include video of him signing “Calma” while shirtless and being showed in alcohol by his teammates.

You’re welcome.

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Ex-Angels employee charged in overdose death of Tyler Skaggs

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FORT WORTH, Texas — A former Angels employee has been charged with conspiracy to distribute fentanyl in connection with last year’s overdose death of Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs, prosecutors in Texas announced Friday.

Eric Prescott Kay was arrested in Fort Worth, Texas, and made his first appearance Friday in federal court, according to Erin Nealy Cox, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas. Kay was communications director for the Angels.

Skaggs was found dead in his hotel room in the Dallas area July 1, 2019, before the start of what was supposed to be a four-game series against the Texas Rangers. The first game was postponed before the teams played the final three games.

Skaggs died after choking on his vomit with a toxic mix of alcohol and the powerful painkillers fentanyl and oxycodone in his system, a coroner’s report said. Prosecutors accused Kay of providing the fentanyl to Skaggs and others, who were not named.

“Tyler Skaggs’s overdose – coming, as it did, in the midst of an ascendant baseball career – should be a wake-up call: No one is immune from this deadly drug, whether sold as a powder or hidden inside an innocuous-looking tablet,” Nealy Cox said.

If convicted, Kay faces up to 20 years in prison. Federal court records do not list an attorney representing him, and an attorney who previously spoke on his behalf did not immediately return a message seeking comment.