Report: New York Yankees Sign Juan Rivera to Minor League Deal
The search for right-handed hitting outfielders continued on Monday, as the New York Yankees signed Juan Rivera to a minor league contract, reports Andrew Marchand of ESPN New York.
Matt Diaz and Russ Canzler were also brought aboard to compete for time as the fourth outfielder, but Rivera has the most major league success amongst the group.
In 12 seasons, Rivera has hit 132 career home runs and produced a line of .272/.323/.443.
He spent the first three seasons of his career with the Yankees, and hit eight home runs in just 88 games with the team.
Against left-handed pitchers last season, Rivera hit .260/.312/.433 with six home runs and 20 RBI.
He may not provide much in the way of defense, but Rivera is a great under-the-radar signing by general manager Brian Cashman.
With so many options in spring training vying for one spot on the team, one player is bound to separate himself from the rest.
There's a very good chance that guy is Rivera, especially considering the fact that he's already dealt with the pressures of playing in New York.
He could be a great compliment to either Brett Gardner in left field or Ichiro Suzuki in right field. His career batting average of .285 against left-handers will make him a perfect replacement for the role vacated by Andruw Jones.
In a quiet offseason for Cashman and the Yankees, it's going to be the small moves that make a difference during the season.
The Rivera signing could very well be one of those types of acquisitions.
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