Phillies sign utility fielder Adam Rosales to minor league deal

PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 30: Adam Rosales
PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 30: Adam Rosales /
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The Phillies bench is starting to come into focus with their latest signing

After deciding not to re-sign veteran fielder Andres Blanco, the Phillies made a move to add a very similar player to their young ballclub.

According to USA Today’s Bob Nightengale the Phillies have agreed to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training with Adam Rosales. Turning 35 this spring, Rosales will have an opportunity to compete for a major league job as Philadelphia’s best glove off the bench.

In 10 seasons playing for major league clubs Rosales has played seven positions, including as a relief pitcher on two separate occasions. With experience across the infield, Rosales is an important player to watch in spring training.

While his versatility and experience are major pluses, Rosales has a career batting average of .227 with a 3/1 K/BB ratio with the Reds, Athletics, Rangers, Padres, and Diamondbacks. Rosales did flash some power in 2016 with 13 home runs in 103 games for San Diego, but it’s nothing to be expected.

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With Blanco’s departure, the Phillies also re-signed Pedro Florimon to compete for the utility job along with prospect Jesmuel Valentin, who is coming off of surgery. Valentin was acquired from the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2014 along with Victor Arano for veteran pitcher Roberto Hernandez.

The Phillies bench will be a major question mark this year, even with the signings of Florimon and Rosales. Aaron Altherr is likely to come off the bench with Rhys Hoskins moving to left field, while veteran Cameron Rupp and second-year catcher Andrew Knapp will likely fight for the backup catcher job behind Jorge Alfaro.

Next: What defines success for the Phillies in 2018?

Look for Valentin, Roman Quinn, and former Red Sox prospect Will Middlebrooks to compete for the final bench jobs in Clearwater next month.

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