The Orioles haven’t decided what to do with Mark Reynolds yet. In the meantime, they signed three players to contracts for next season and acquire an infielder to shore up their bench.
Second baseman Alexi Casilla, catcher Taylor Teagarden and outfielder Steve Pearce were signed to 2013 contracts on Friday. They also picked up Yamaico Navarro from the Pittsburgh Pirates organization to compete for a roster spot. The Orioles sent minor league pitcher Jhondaniel Medina to the Pirates.
The 25-year-old Navarro has played 71 games with Boston, Kansas City and Pittsburgh over the last three seasons. He has a lifetime batting average of .191 with two home runs and 18 RBIs.
Navarro primarily plays shortstop and third base, but has also played second base, left field and right field in the majors.
The 5-foot-11, 215 lb. Navarro has no stolen bases in his major league career. In seven games against the Orioles, Navarro batted .222 (4-for-18).
Navarro’s acquisition probably means the end of Omar Quintanilla’s time with the Orioles. They have until 11:59 p.m. on Friday night to offer contracts to Reynolds and Quintanilla.
Medina, a 19-year-old Venezuelan was 1-3 with a 4.14 ERA in 10 games at Gulf Coast and Aberdeen last season.
To make room for Navarro on the roster, the Orioles designated right-handed pitcher Stu Pomeranz for assignment. Pomeranz, who missed most of the season after an oblique strain had a 3.00 ERA in three games.
There was some thought that the Orioles would not tender contracts to Teagarden and Pearce, but instead try to re-sign them later. Teagarden, a favorite of manager Buck Showalter, could have benefited by a robust market for backup catchers. Pearce has been twice acquired by the Orioles, and after all that effort, they were reluctant to let him go.
The Orioles were able to reach agreement with Teagarden, Pearce and Casilla without going to arbitration.