According to Matt Eddy from Baseball America, the Pittsburgh Pirates have signed outfielder Danny Ortiz to a minor league deal. He was a 2008 draft pick of the Minnesota Twins, selected in the fourth round, who has spent the last two seasons in AAA. The 25-year-old(turns 26 in January) throws/hits left-handed and has moved around the outfield, playing all three positions often.
In 2015 in the International League, Ortiz hit .248/.295/.430 in 131 games, with 31 doubles and 17 homers. He had just 33 walks, which has been a weakness during his career, with 161 total over seven seasons. He doesn’t have much speed either, stealing 27 bases in 46 attempts during his career. He looks to be a AAA roster filler in the outfield, who is still young enough that the power is intriguing, but he has no Major League experience and obvious flaws, so he won’t be high on the depth chart at this point.
He is currently playing winter ball in Puerto Rico, where he is having a difficult time at the plate, hitting .163/.300/.204 over 16 games.
The Pirates also signed right-handed pitcher Curtis Partch out of the San Francisco Giants organization. The 28-year-old(29 in February) has played parts of two seasons in the majors with the Cincinnati Reds, posting a 4.75 ERA in 30.1 innings over 20 appearances. He has 22 strikeouts, but also walked 24 batters. In 2015, he spent the entire year with Sacramento in the high-offense Pacific Coast League, where he had a 3.53 ERA in 63.2 innings, with 81 strikeouts and 26 walks.
Partch looks to be bullpen depth for Indianapolis, but he does have a fastball that touches 97 mph and Baseball America says that he has the makings of a plus slider, so he could be an intriguing arm if that can fix his command issues, which were a lot worse in the majors than in the minors.
In other minor league free agent news, Junior Sosa has signed with the Miami Marlins. He was originally signed as a 17-year-old out of Venezuela by the Pirates and has been in the organization since March 2008.