The Houston Astros have signed catcher Juan Centeno to a minor league contract with an invite to Spring Training, reports Houston Chronicle’s Jake Kaplan.
The Astros have signed catcher Juan Centeno to a minor league deal with an invitation to major league spring training.— Jake Kaplan (@jakemkaplan) December 20, 2016
Centeno, 27, has played in 79 major leagues game since 2013. He batted .261 (46x176) with 12 doubles, three home runs, 25 RBIs, and a 91 OPS+ in 2016 with the Minnesota Twins.
In a way, he is an odd choice as he was the second-worst among catchers in pitch framing last season, per StatCorner. Houston has shown a constant interesting in improving their catchers' framing, thus Centeno made a reclamation project.
Centeno will enter a race with Brain McCann, Evan Gattis, Max Stassi, Tyler Heineman, Garrett Stubbs, and 2016 third-round draft pick Jake Rogers. Stassi is out of minor league options and would have to clear waivers to be outrighted to the minor leagues.
He is three player to sign a minor league contract with the Astros this offseason, joining left-handed reliever C.J. Riefenhauser and infielder Reid Brignac.