January 3rd, 2013

Brewers sign Tosoni, Hoey, Chavez to Minor League Deals


Big-name free agent signings haven’t exactly been in vogue for the Brewers so far this offseason. With relievers Tom Gorzelanny and Mike Gonzalez likely to end up as Milwaukee’s most notable winter additions, it has become obvious that general manager Doug Melvin and his brass prefer financial security over large, multi-year contracts that could otherwise hamper the organization moving forward.

That trend continued late Wednesday night, when it was announced that the club had signed three players to minor league deals.

Right-handed pitcher Jim Hoey, shortstop Ozzie Chavez and outfielder Rene Tosoni each agreed in principle to join Milwaukee’s farm system. The monetary figures of each contract have not yet been released to the public.

Matt Eddy, editor for Baseball America, first broke the story via his Twitter page Wednesday night.

Hoey, 30, is a former 13th-round draft pick back in 2003 by the Baltimore Orioles, and last pitched in the big leagues in 2011 with the Minnesota Twins. He held true to a 5.47 ERA, 1.91 WHIP and strikeout-to-walk ratio of 1.08 that year, and last season played within the Toronto Blue Jays’ triple-A affiliate, where he posted a 4.60 ERA and walked 6.2 batters per nine innings pitched, according to Baseball Reference.

Chavez, 29, first played professionally in 2001 as a 17-year-old in Milwaukee’s minor league system and remained there through the 2008 system. Since then, he has spent time in the Philadelphia Phillies and Chicago White Sox’s minor league systems. He is a career .245/.306/.324 hitter over his 11 minor-league seasons.

Tosoni, 26, is a former standout outfield prospect with the Minnesota Twins, spending time in the club’s farm system from 2007 to 2012. Over his six professional seasons, he has hit .262/.348/.398, but has managed to crack the big-league stage only once, where in 2011 he batted just .203 over 60 games for Minnesota. In 2009, Tosoni took home MVP honors in the 2009 MLB All-Star futures game , where he went 1-for-1 with one run batted in.

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