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American League

National League

KANSAS CITY ROYALS
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Signed OF-L Travis Snider to a minor-league deal. [1/30]

Back in November, Mike Silverman reported the Royals were interested in Snider. Here's confirmation.

Though he just turned 28, Snider hasn't rocked many rhymes during his big-league career; instead, he's found it darn near impossible to link together good offensive efforts, even while being platooned throughout. As such, Snider's accomplishments are spare: two seasons with an OPS+ topping 100, and a lone bankable skill in walking. There's value in taking free passes, of course, but there's considerably less value in it when that's all you do—like a younger Daniel Nava, or a more popular Robbie Grossman—and it's far from what was expected from Snider during his top prospect days.

Ah, those top prospect days; they've gone by fast—and what's left? For Snider, the answer is an apparent spring competition with Reymond Fuentes to secure a spot on the bench as the reserve outfielder who never plays. If Snider is good, he'll win the role; if he's lucky, he'll get some playing time due to injury or poor performance; if he's both, he might even produce a little bit. And if he's neither? Snider will be back here in a few months, signing another minor-league deal and leaving us to wonder just how his career strayed so far from the projections.

MINNESOTA TWINS
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Signed DH-R Carlos Quentin to a minor-league deal. [2/2]

Sure. Why not? Quentin retired last May after spending a few weeks on the Mariners' farm. Evidently, he wasn't finished playing after all—that or he just wanted a paid vacation. Whatever Quentin's motives, you figure he's going to have an elephant seal of a time making the Twins roster, which has starters entrenched at first base and DH, as well as in right field. Maybe Quentin smacks the ball around enough in camp to threaten Eddie Rosario's spot in the lineup; it seems more likely, however, that he'll spend spring (and probably some of the summer) auditioning for another American League team. Quentin's contract includes a June 1 opt-out; you have every right in the world to question whether he'll make it until then.

NEW YORK YANKEES
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Claimed UTL-R Ronald Torreyes off waivers from the Angels; designated OF-R Lane Adams for assignment. [2/1]

The Yankees undo a move they made a month ago, when they designated Torreyes for assignment to claim Adams off waivers. What's changed? If anything, the Yankees' confidence in Torreyes going unclaimed. When a team wants to keep two players in its system but knows that one would get snatched, the obvious course of action is to try passing the other player through. Adams seems like a decent bet to go untouched: he's a 26-year-old outfielder who, upon reaching Triple-A for the first time, batted .226/.305/.374. Yeah, yeah, he's a near-elite baserunner with a good glove and so on—that doesn't change the fact that speed-and-D outfielders who can't hit are as common in the minors as second jobs. Torreyes isn't a golden goose, either, but this is a smart play for a team who knows how to manage its roster.

WASHINGTON NATIONALS
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Signed INF-R Brendan Ryan to a minor-league deal. [2/2]

First Mike Rizzo signed Stephen Drew, now he inks Ryan—think he was fond of what the 2014-15 Yankees had going on? When Ryan was last in the news, he had been released by the Cubs after coming over in the Starlin Castro trade. Rough, sure, but to be expected at this point in his career. Ryan hasn't had a good offensive season since 2009, and missed serious time last year due to various ailments; factor in how he's about to celebrate his 34th birthday, and you can understand the tepid market. Barring injury the Nationals wouldn't appear to have room for Ryan on their projected roster—lest they shun Tyler Moore—but therein is the rub: injuries happen . . . especially to Ryan Zimmerman and Anthony Rendon. If Ryan cracks the Nats' Opening Day roster, it'll probably coincide with one of those two heading to the disabled list.