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Red Sox add some depth

Posted by Peter Abraham, Globe Staff  January 25, 2014 03:41 PM

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A few updates for you:

The Red Sox signed lefthanded reliever Jose Mijares to a minor league contract that includes an invitation to major league spring training.

The 29-year-old has six years of major league experience with three teams. He appeared in 60 games for the Giants last season, posting a 4.22 ERA and 1.77 WHIP. But Mijares allowed only three home runs over 49 innings and struck out 54.

Mijares has held lefthanded hitters to a .225 batting average and .623 OPS in his career. He can earn $1 million if he makes the team (with incentives) or opt out of his deal near the end of spring training if he does not.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports first had the news on Mijares.

The Red Sox signed 29-year-old outfielder Scott Cousins to a minor league contract that does not include an invitation to major league spring training.

Cousins is a lefty hitter with a career slash line of .179 /.230/.285 over 135 games with the Marlins and Angels. He had only five plate appearances in the majors last season, spending most of his time with Triple A Salt Lake (.233/.310/.306).

Cousins, who is solid defensive center fielder, would project to be part of Pawtucket's roster initially. Jerry Crasnick of ESPN had the news on Cousins.

The Sox also signed 31-year-old righthanded reliever Jose Valdez to a minor league deal. He appeared in 24 games for Houston the last two seasons. Valdez was originally signed by the Yankees in 2002 as a starter and went to the Astros in 2009 as a free agent.

Valdez pitched poorly for Triple A Oklahoma City last season. He had a 5.72 ERA and 1.60 WHIP over 35 games before the Astros released him on July 15.

Remember Lars Anderson? The former Red Sox prospect has signed a minor league deal with the Cubs. He'll be reunited there with Theo Epstein and Jason McLeod, the executives who drafted him in 2006.

A well-hyped prospect, Anderson has hit only .250 in 1,523 Triple A at-bats with 35 home runs. He was 8 of 48 (.167) over parts of three seasons with the Red Sox before he was traded to Cleveland for RHP Steven Wright in 2012. The White Sox released him last season.

Ranking prospects is an inexact science (witness the aforementioned Anderson). But it's worth noting that Xander Bogaerts was ranked second among prospects by MLB.com. The Sox had nine players in the top 100.

Henry Owens (39), Jackie Bradley Jr. (33), Allen Webster (46), Garin Cecchini (57), Blake Swihart (61), Mookie Betts (62), Matt Barnes (86) and Trey Ball (96) also made the list.

The other four teams in the AL East had a total of 11 players ranked.

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