Looking for organizational bullpen depth and a possible contributor at the big-league level, the Phillies have signed veteran Michael Ynoa to a minor-league contract. The deal includes an invite to big-league spring training camp.
Ynoa, a 6-7 right-hander, gained a lot of attention when the Oakland A’s signed him for $4.5 million as a teenager out of the Dominican Republic back in 2008. Ynoa has been plagued by control issues throughout his career. He never advanced beyond Single A in the Oakland system before being traded to the Chicago White Sox in December 2014. He appeared in 45 games with the White Sox in 2016 and 2017 and recorded a 4.42 ERA while walking 5.9 batters per nine innings and striking out 8.1.
Ynoa pitched well in the Dominican winter league last year and returned to the A’s organization on a minor-league contract in 2019. He has pitched well again this winter in the DR. In 12 2/3 innings for Aguilas Cibeanas, he has allowed eight hits and three earned runs while walking four and striking out 18.
So the Phillies will take a look.
Ramon Rosso, another Phillies’ pitcher, is also a member of the Aguilas Cibeanas club. He pitched well before reaching his innings limit for the winter. In 26 innings, he gave up 15 hits and nine earned runs (3.12 ERA). He struck out 31 and walked six.
Rosso, a 24-year-old right-hander, made his big-league debut with the Phillies in 2020 and struggled in seven games. He pitched 9⅔ innings and struck out 11. However, he gave up nine hits, eight walks and seven runs.
Despite Rosso's struggles in the big leagues in 2020, the Phillies still like his potential and power arm. He is on the team's 40-man roster and can work as a starter or reliever.
This is generally the time of year when teams sign free agents to minor-league deals. In addition to Ynoa, the Phillies have signed utility man Ronald Torreyes and catcher Christian Bethancourt. Both were in big-league camp with the Phillies last season.