Nationals Sign Rick Ankiel


Sep 22, 2011; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Washington Nationals center fielder Rick Ankiel (24) doubles during the third inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE

Amanda Comak of the Washington Times reports via Twitter that the Nationals have signed center fielder Rick Ankiel to a minor league deal with an invite to Spring Training. He figures to be in the mix for time in center along with Roger Bernadina and fellow free agent signing Mike Cameron (also on a minor league deal).

Ankiel spent last season with the Nationals, hitting .239 in 122 games, spending time in right and center field. Though Ankiel is somewhat of a liability on offense, he is known for having one of the best outfield arms in the game. Last year he was considered a luxury to have in the outfield, posting the best season of his career with an 8.5 UZR rating.