Looking to add some veteran players for insurance, the Phillies signed four players to minor league deals for the 2017 season. The best known is outfielder Daniel Nava, who is best known for his time with the Boston Red Sox who he made his major league debut with in 2010. Left-hander Sean Burnett and infielders Pedro Florimon and Hector Gomez also signed deals with the Phillies.
After his time in Boston, Nava, who turns 34 in February, signed with Tampa Bay following his release. After spending the latter part of 2015 with the Rays, he signed with the Angels last season and was dealt to the Kansas City Royals late in the year.
Since hitting a career-high .303 with the Red Sox in 2013 and following tht up with a .270 season in 2014, Nava's numbers started to plunge. When he was released in 2015, he was batting just .152 in 78 plate appearances with the Red Sox. Over the past two seasons, Nava has hit just .208 with two home runs and 23 RBI in 114 games in the majors. In his six-year career, the outfielder/first baseman has a line of 25-185-.262/.353/.375 and has played in just over 500 major league games.
Burnett, 34, was once one of the better left-handed relievers in the game, posting an ERA of 2.85 from 2009 through the 2012 season with Pittsburgh and Washington, while appearing in 283 games. Since then, Burnett has pitched in just 26 games in the majors and pitched the latter part of the 2012 season with bone chips in his elbow, but has credited adrenaline with keeping him going. After inking an $8-million deal with the Angels following the season, Burnett and his balky elbow were only able to give the Angels 9 2/3 innings in 13 appearances before he went on the DL and missed the rest of the season with a torn flexor tendon in his elbow. In 2014, Burnett's elbow blew out after just three games and he underwent Tommy John surgery for the second time in his career - the first time was in 2004 - and missed the rest of the 2014 and all of the 2015 seasons.
The lefty returned last season and pitched in 10 games with the Nationals, posting a 3.18 ERA covering 5 2/3 innings. He also pitched in 47 minor league games with Minnesota, the Dodgers, Atlanta, and finally, Washington, last season and had a 2.28 ERA in 47 1/3 innings of work.
Florimon, who turned 30 last weekend, has played in the majors with Baltimore, Minnesota and Pittsburgh. In 256 games, Florimon is right at the .200 mark, with a .261 on-base percentage and .297 slugging percentage. Defensively, Florimon is solid at both second base and shortstop, with good range.
Gomez, 28, hasn't played in the majors since 2015 when he was with Milwaukee and played in a career-high 66 games, hitting .181/.212/.323 for the Brewers. In his career, he's played 83 major league games - two with the Rockies and the rest with Milwaukee - and is a .183 hitter. Gomez can play at second, third and short and is strong defensively, and like Florimon, has good range.
All four players received invitations to spring training and will compete for spots on the Phillies major league roster.