Nationals sign veteran Dobbs to minor-league deal

Nationals sign veteran Dobbs to minor-league deal
May 12, 2014, 11:30 am
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The Nationals have signed Greg Dobbs to a minor-league contract, acquiring the veteran pinch-hitting specialist, who was released by the Marlins last week.

Dobbs, 35, spent the last four seasons with Miami, where he saw significant playing time and posted a .264 batting average with a .307 on-base percentage and .362 slugging percentage. Re-signed over the winter to a $1.7 million deal, he wound up serving only as a pinch-hitter this season, going just 1-for-13 with zero walks and four strikeouts.

The Marlins designated Dobbs (who previously has played both corner infield and outfield positions) for assignment on April 29, then released him Tuesday. The Nationals haven't yet decided where he'll report, but they could choose to add him to their big-league roster in the near future.

Given the surplus of injuries they've sustained to key lineup members — Ryan Zimmerman, Bryce Harper and Adam LaRoche all are currently on the disabled list — the Nationals have been forced to move bench players into everyday roles. That, in turn, has weakened their bench, which currently includes veterans Kevin Frandsen and Scott Hairston, rookie Zach Walters and catchers Jose Lobaton and Sandy Leon.

The club could decide to add Dobbs to its bench at some point, especially if team officials decide there's no need for a third catcher.