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Astros sign minor league pitcher Dayan Diaz with an invite to Spring Training

Former Astros farmhand returns to Houston with an invite to Spring Training.

Cincinnati Reds v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

The Houston Astros announced on Thursday the team has signed RHP Dayan Diaz to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training, per general manager Jeff Luhnow.

Diaz, 27, was in the Reds system during the 2016 season. He was 7-1 with a 3.05 ERA in 40 games with Triple-A Louisville. Diaz did make to the major league for the first time in his 10-year career last season, pitching in six games with the Reds (0-0, 9.45 ERA).

Diaz began his pro career with the Astros in 2005 as a non-drafted free agent out of Colombia. He spent seven seasons with the Astros (2006-12).

Diaz last season was with Single-A Lexington in 2012 with a 5-4 record with 1.85 ERA in 41 games in relief -- he elected free agency and joined Cubs in 2013.

The Astros now have 19 non-roster invitees scheduled to attend camp, putting the overall roster at 59 players with a full 40-man roster.

Diaz is a solid addition for minor league depth entering the 2017 season, but he doesn’t fill the need for a second left-handed pitcher in the bullpen. He will struggle to find a spot on breaking camp from Spring Training.

The one open spot in the bullpen, formerly held by Pat Neshek, already appears to be replaced by the likes of James Hoyt and Brady Rodgers.