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Braves Extend Offer To Utility Infielder Ramiro Pena

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Former Yankee could join Braves in minor league deal.

Jim McIsaac

The Atlanta Braves are continuing to shore up their bench and backup spots, and could be close to signing former Yankees utility infielder Ramiro Pena, according to a report in a Mexican news site (in Spanish).

Pena is a switch-hitting shortstop who has played for parts of the last four seasons in New York, backing up shortstop, third base, and second base. Pena is currently playing in the Mexican Pacific League, and doing quite well, putting up a .302/.432/.477 slash line.

The article indicating his offer from Atlanta is dated today, but yesterday the Braves signed Blake DeWitt to a minor league contract, another utility infielder with Major League experience. Adding yet another utility infielder seems redundant, but I guess they're realizing some fears from last season when they went through several shortstops and ended up having to trade for Paul Janish. It may also underscore the notion that the Braves don't consider Tyler Pastornicky a reliable backup shortstop.

The deal doesn't seem to be official yet, so we'll keep you updated on whether or not he signs. If he does, he would likely compete with DeWitt in spring training for a backup infield spot. A reader also pointed out that Janish is likely to miss the first month of the season recovering from an injury, so additional bodies will be needed.