Blue Jays sign infielder Gregorio Petit, claim catcher Juan Graterol

Los Angeles Angels second baseman Gregorio Petit watches his relay throw to first as Oakland Athletics' Max Muncy slides between his legs. (Lenny Ignelzi/AP)

The Toronto Blue Jays have signed infielder Gregorio Petit to a minor-league contract and claimed catcher Juan Graterol from the Los Angeles Angels, the team announced.

Petit, 32, appeared in 89 games with the Angels in 2016, hitting .245 with a .647 OPS. The Venezuelan spent the 2016 season with the New York Yankees organization.

Primarily a shortstop throughout his minor-league career, Petit has also seen time at second base and third base. With the departure of utility player Andy Burns, who signed to play in South Korea earlier this off-season, Petit will have an opportunity to provide depth at multiple positions in the upper minors.

Graterol, 27 and also from Venezuela, made his brief MLB debut last season, appearing in nine games with the Angels.

In 68 games with the triple-A Salt Lake Bees, Graterol hit .300 and threw out 32% of runners attempting to steal.

Graterol does not offer much power, topping out at four home runs in the minors, but he does put the ball in play at a very high rate. In 246 plate appearances last season, Graterol struck out 27 times (11.0%) and walked just 10 times (4.1%).

Toronto’s catching depth has been highlighted by general manager Ross Atkins as an area of need entering spring training. A.J. Jimenez is currently the in-house favourite to back up Russell Martin, while Graterol will join top prospect Reese McGuire and off-season additions Mike Ohlman and Alex Monsalve in the catching competition.

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