The Associated PressANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Free-agent catcher Rene Rivera and the Los Angeles Angels have agreed to a $2.8 million, one-year contract.
Rivera has played for six teams over nine seasons in a major league career that began with Seattle. He split last season between the New York Mets and Chicago Cubs, batting .252 with 10 homers and 35 RBIs in 74 games.
The 34-year-old Rivera has a strong arm behind the plate, throwing out 36.8 percent of attempted base-stealers.
He is likely to compete for the Angels’ backup job behind Gold Glove winner Martin Maldonado, who is eligible for arbitration after appearing in 138 games last season.
Rivera’s base salary is guaranteed, and he can earn $200,000 in performance bonuses for games started at catcher: $50,000 each for 45, 50, 55 and 60.
In another move Tuesday night, Angels left-hander Nate Smith was designated for assignment. Smith is a longtime Angels prospect. He won’t pitch in 2018 after having shoulder surgery last month.
Mets, Bruce reach agreement
NEW YORK (AP) — Jay Bruce and his proven bat are headed back to the New York Mets.
The free-agent outfielder is set to return to the Big Apple after agreeing to a $39 million, three-year contract, according to two people familiar with the negotiations. The people spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal is pending a physical and no announcement had been made.
A three-time All-Star, Bruce hit a combined .254 with 36 home runs and 101 RBIs for the Mets and Cleveland Indians last season. After falling out of playoff contention, New York traded him to the AL Central champions on Aug. 9 for minor league pitcher Ryder Ryan.
Bruce, who turns 31 on April 3, fills a hole in the outfield and brings back some much-needed power to a Mets team trying to rebound from an injury-ravaged 70-92 season. His return in right field would likely mean Michael Conforto is ticketed for center once he recovers from shoulder surgery.
Yanks to extend protective netting
NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Yankees are expanding netting to protect seats behind each dugout and for five sections past down both foul lines, a decision announced after several fans were injured last year.
A boy was struck on the head by a portion of Chris Carter’s broken bat at Yankee Stadium on May 25, and a fan sitting beyond the first-base dugout was hit by a 105 mph foul ball off the bat of Aaron Judge on July 25. A young girl was injured by a 168 kph foul ball off the bat of Todd Frazier on Sept. 20 and was taken to a hospital.Speech