Claudio Vargas passed his physical, making his one-year deal official. Per Tom Haudricourt, Vargas will make $900,000 in base salary, with a possible additional $400,000 in incentives. As I wrote a couple days ago, the additions of Vargas and LaTroy Hawkins mean there’s likely only one spot open in the pen to start the year if David Riske is ready to go.
The Brewers added another pitcher today, inking former Rangers pitching prospect Kameron Loe to a minor league deal with an invitation to big league spring training. Loe was 19-23 with a 4.77 ERA in 5 seasons with the Rangers, but the numbers don’t tell the whole story — he struggled with a conversion to the starting rotation (5.08 ERA in 256 innings), but was passable as a reliever (3.83 ERA in 87 innings, and a WHIP nearly 0.2 lower than his starting WHIP). To me, this seems like another John Halama signing, mostly made for Triple A depth with a spring training invite just in case he impresses. Aside from being a former Ranger and Doug Melvin draftee, Loe may be best known for his size (somewhere between 6’7″ and 6’8″, depending on where you look) and his pet boa constrictor. I cannot make this stuff up. He spent last season pitching in Japan.
The Brewers handed out another minor league contract to catcher Matt Treanor, who will also be getting a big league spring training invite. By my count, that makes roughly 35 catchers in camp for the Brewers, so it’s hard to see him as being anything but a veteran presence in the minors. On the bright side, if he does make the big league roster, the Brewers may get a new celebrity fan — his wife is Olympic gold medalist beach volleyball player Misty May.