The Washington Nationals have added yet another option to backup Wilson Ramos, signing veteran catcher Koyie Hill to a minor league deal with an invitation to big league camp.
The #Nats have agreed to terms with catcher Koyie Hill on a Minor League contract with an invitation to Major League Spring Training.
— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) February 5, 2014
Nats get another backup catcher option in Koyie Hill, 35. Minor league deal with invite.
— Adam Kilgore (@AdamKilgoreWP) February 5, 2014
Hill is a career .206 hitter in parts of 10 major-league seasons with the Dodgers, Diamondbacks, Cubs and Marlins. Hill has appeared in 75 major league games in the past three seasons with the Chicago Cubs in 2011-12 and Miami Marlins last season–posting a combined .182/.234/.242 line with six doubles and two home runs in 253 plate appearances. Hill also spent time with the Nationals’ Triple-A affiliate in Syracuse, where he hit .163 in 31 games.
Hill joins a long list of catchers that the Nationals have signed to minor league deals this winter, but he’ll likely only compete with Jhonatan Solano, Sandy Leon and Chris Snyder. Last month, District on Deck evaluated the team’s backup catcher options.
While it looks like Hill will have a chance to earn the backup job, it’s highly unlikely that he’ll make the big league club, given his struggles with the bat. A .163 average in Triple-A usually doesn’t earn you a big league job. However, he is a low-risk signing and the Nationals have yet another option if Wilson Ramos gets injured.