Thursday was the final day of the 2015 MLB Winter Meetings with the only notable event on the schedule being the annual Rule 5 draft. That is where teams can draft a player from another team's minor league system, but the picks cost $50,000 in addition to a pick in the June draft. Another catch is that if the player does not remain with the team that drafts him, he must be offered back to his original team for $25,000. Aside from that, there were still a few minor moves that were made. Here is a look at those moves.
Yunel Escobar Heads West
The Los Angeles Angels made a trade with the Washington Nationals that saw infielder Yunel Escobar go to the Angels in exchange for relief pitcher Trevor Gott and a unnamed minor league player. The trade works for both teams as the Angels get a third baseman who is only owed $7 million next season. Escobar also has an option for 2017 at the same price. The Nationals receive some bullpen help in Got, who will not hit free agency until 2022. The Angels acquired him in 2014 in a trade with the San Diego Padres. He made his major league debut last June. In his partial season in the majors, he posted a 4-2 record with a 3.02 ERA over 47.2 innings.
Detroit Adds Bullpen Depth
The Detroit Tigers reached an agreement on a minor league deal with right handed pitcher Preston Guilmet, who will receive an invitation to spring training. He was initially drafted by the Oakland Athletics in 2008, but chose to return to college. He was drafted by the Cleveland Indians the following year in the ninth round. Over his three seasons in professional baseball, he has bounced around with 14 teams throughout the majors and minors. In his career, he has posted a record of 24-19 with 433.1 innings pitched. His career ERA is 3.09, although his ERA in the major leagues is 8.22. He will be the fourth reliever that the team has picked up this winter, although the team has not yet confirmed this signing.
David Hernandez Signs Deal With Phillies
Right handed relief pitcher David Hernandez signed a one year contract with the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday that will see him get paid $3.9 million, as well as performance based incentives. Hernandez was drafted by the Baltimore Orioles in 2005, but has spent the past four seasons with the Arizona Diamondbacks as a late inning specialist. In the 2015 season, he posted a 4.28 ERA in 40 appearances for Arizona, along with 33 strikeouts. His effectiveness was questioned at the start of the season after he missed the entire 2014 season due to Tommy John surgery. Hernandez eased those concerns with his velocity remaining in the mid-90s.
Bonifacio Goes Back To Atlanta
The Atlanta Braves made a minor move as they signed veteran utility man Emilio Bonafacio to a one year contract that is worth $1.25 million. There are incentives included that could possibly double that amount. In 2015, he started the season with the Chicago White Sox, but struggled as he posted a slash line of .167/.198/.192 with 13 total hits. He soon ended up in the Chicago Cubs minor league system, where he ended the season in Triple-A. He has been with Atlanta before, as Bonifacio finished the 2014 season with the Braves after being traded from the Cubs. In 41 games with Atlanta that season, he batted .212/.273/.280 with 12 stolen bases. The Braves hope that he will not only contribute on the field, but will also bring a veteran presence into a relatively young clubhouse.