Infielder Alexi Casilla among those signed by Rays with invites to spring training
The Tampa Bay Rays announced the signings of right-hander Ronald Belisario, infielder Alexi Casilla and left-hander Robert Zarate to minor-league contracts with invites to spring training on Monday.
Belisario, 32, spent last season with the Chicago White Sox and went 4-8 with eight saves and a 5.56 ERA in 62 appearances (66 1/3 innings). In the previous two seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers, he was 13-8 with a 3.24 ERA in 145 appearances. He has a career 3.75 ERA in five major-league seasons.
Casilla, 30, played in parts of six seasons in the majors with the Minnesota Twins (2006 to 2012) and Baltimore Orioles (2013 to 2014). He has hit a career .247 with 12 home runs and 157 RBI. He has seen time at second base (451 games), shortstop (79), third base (11) and center field (one).
Zarate, 28, spent recent months pitching for Tigres de Aragua of the Venezuelan Winter League, where he appeared in seven games (five starts). He spent the 2012-13 campaign with the Hanshin Tigers of the Japan Central League, and he pitched in the Toronto Blue Jays system from 2006 to 2008, going 2-3 with a 2.42 ERA in 67 innings.
In addition, the Rays invited eight of their minor-league players to major-league spring training in Port Charlotte, Florida: Right-hander Andrew Bellatti, infielder Vince Belnome, right-hander Dylan Floro, right-hander Brandon Gomes, catcher Luke Maile, infielder/outfielder Taylor Motter, outfielder Boog Powell and shortstop Daniel Robertson. The Rays have invited 62 players to major league spring training.