Kenny Karst-USA TODAY Sports

Storylines: Blue Jays sign Mat Latos to minor league deal

Lots of players continue to sign minor league deals as Major League camps get underway, and Mat Latos was the latest one to do that on Thursday...

Top Storylines:

- The Toronto Blue Jays have added to their pitching depth signing veteran right-handed pitcher Mat Latos to a minor-league deal per Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet.  He is able to earn $1.5MM if he breaks camp with the club and can earn up to $500K in incentives if possible milestones via both starting and relieving are met.  Latos is not the dominant pitcher he once was when he was with the Cincinnati Reds.  Ankle surgery during Spring Training of 2013 appeared to have sapped him of velocity on his pitches and for the past two seasons he has logged a mediocre 4.93 ERA across 186.1 innings of work.  Latos spent the early part of 2016 with the Chicago White Sox and despite a strong start, he faltered badly in the middle of the season and was released.  He caught on with the Washington Nationals down the stretch.  Latos will be able to fill in as both relief and starting pitching depth as he is capable of throwing multiple innings out of the bullpen and stepping into the rotation should a possible injury arise amongst the current crop of starters.  

Other Storylines:

- Left-handed reliever Randy Choate has announced his retirement from baseball per Sweeny Murti of WFAN.  Choate is leaving the game after a 15-year career where he tossed a 3.90 ERA across 408 innings of work and held opposing left-handed batters to a .195/276/.274 slash line.

- The Tampa Bay Rays are showing interest in free agent reliever Brian Wilson per Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.  The bearded reliever is attempting a comeback as a knuckleball reliever after not appearing in a game since 2014.  He was one of the most dominant closers in the game from 2008-2011 with the San Francisco Giants.


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