Come one, come all. If you’re creaking between the knees, own a catcher’s mask and are willing to travel, the Dodgers are interested.
But if you’re interested in sort of competing for the backup spot, or at least to get to the top of the line should Federowicz falter, the Dodgers are the team for you.
On Wednesday the Washington Post's Adam Kilgore reported that the Dodgers had signed former Nationals catcher Jesus Flores to a minor-league deal that includes an invitation to their major-league camp.
Flores, 28, has spent all of his major-league career with the Nationals, and after Wilson Ramos tore his ACL in mid-May, for a time was the Nationals starter. At least until they traded for Kurt Suzuki on Aug. 3.
Flores did not enjoy the greatest year, batting .213 with .248 on-base and .329 slugging percentages. He had six homers and 26 RBI in 277 at-bats. He threw out just nine of 60 base-stealers.
Flores will join journeymen Ramon Castro (36), Eliezer Alfonzo (33), and Wilkin Castillo (28, last in the majors in 2009) as candidates to push Federowicz and at least compete for a waiting spot at triple-A Albuquerque.
Dodgers General Manager Ned Colletti loves his backup catchers, so while anything could happen, most likely only one or two will survive the spring and head to Albuquerque while the Dodgers take a wait-and-see approach to Federowicz.
There’s not much of a gamble here, it’s more of just covering yourself in case things don’t go as hoped. Just building up some insurance. Flores probably has the best shot, though for now, only Federowicz is on the 40-man roster.
The sidearming right-hander from Australia turned 34 last month. Back and shoulder surgeries limited him to just 21 appearances the past two seasons, though for his seven-year career with the Braves he sported a 2.59 ERA and 1.28 WHIP.