The Cardinals signed veteran left-hander Ron Villone to a minor league contract today. Villone, 38, is a journeyman reliever coming off a two-year stint with the New York Yankees. St. Louis will be his 11th team since first making it to the big leagues in 1995. For his career, Villone is 55-57, with a 4.76 Earned Run Average. Used mostly as a reliever, he’s appeared in 580 games, with 93 starts. He pitched 42 innings in ’07, compiling an ERA of 4.25. View all of his stats here.
Of course the minor league deal includes an invite to Spring Training, where he could challenge Randy Flores and Tyler Johnson for a spot in the bullpen. Earlier this offseason, the Cards brought in Randy’s brother Ron Flores, also a lefty reliever. If nothing else, he and Villone add depth from the left side. For more on the story, check out the Matthew Leach article.
There’s not much to say about this signing. It isn’t much to get excited about, but it never hurts to add depth and create more competition. Also, if the Cardinals are trying to sign everyone listed in the Mitchell Report, they’re off to a good start.
Tomorrow is an exciting day for me. I’m going to make the short drive up to Jupiter to watch some of the club’s workouts. I’m most eager to see the new guys, especially the youngsters. I’ll be sure to take plenty of pictures, and I’ll report anything interesting, so be sure to check back.