The Diamondbacks have signed utilityman Yairo Munoz to a minor league deal, as indicated on the team’s list of non-roster invitees to Spring Training. Munoz elected free agency after being outrighted off the Phillies’ 40-man roster following the season.
Munoz signed a minors deal with Philadelphia last winter and ended up appearing in 29 games for the NL champions, hitting .211/.250/.404 with three homers over 60 plate appearances. His time on the active roster mostly coincided with Jean Segura’s stint on the 60-day injured list, as Munoz saw a lot of action at second base while Segura was recovering from a broken finger. Most of Munoz’s other playing time came as pinch-hitter, pinch-runner, or late-game defensive sub.
Beginning his career as a shortstop, Munoz has settled into a role as a versatile fill-in at second or third base, or either corner outfield spot in a pinch. Josh Rojas has a similar role in more of an everyday capacity with the D’Backs, and might be bounced around the diamond a bit more in 2023 now that Evan Longoria could handle some third base action when not DH’ing. Emmanuel Rivera, Geraldo Perdomo, Diego Castillo, and other non-roster invites Jake Hager and Phillip Evans are among the names who will be competing with Munoz to win a job on Arizona’s bench.
Munoz has appeared in each of the last five Major League seasons, with 108 of his 242 career games coming in his 2018 rookie season with the Cardinals. After an impressive .273/.350/.413 performance over 329 PA in that first season, Munoz has since struggled to recapture that form, and left the Cardinals under rather controversial circumstances during Spring Training in 2020. Munoz then caught on with the Red Sox, appearing in only 17 MLB games with Boston in 2020-21.