Tigers bring back Presley on Minor League deal

Perez expected to sign similar pact; club yet to announce either move

Tigers bring back Presley on Minor League deal

DETROIT -- While the Tigers remain quiet on Major League moves heading into the holidays, their stream of Minor League transactions continues as they try to build depth in their system and center-field options in their Spring Training camp.

That now includes outfielder Alex Presley, who spent a brief stint in Detroit this past season. He has agreed to terms on a Minor League contract with a Spring Training invite. Another former Major League outfielder, Juan Perez, is expected to sign a similar deal shortly.

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The Tigers have not announced either deal. The moves come as Detroit tries to reconcile a lineup that doesn't yet have a replacement for Cameron Maybin with a payroll that remains in luxury-tax territory while they entertain trade interest in veterans such as J.D. Martinez.

Presley's agreement was first reported by SB National. The 31-year-old Presley is a left-handed hitter who can play all three outfield positions. He signed a Minor League contract with the Tigers last July after the Brewers designated him for assignment at the end of June. He spent a week and a half with Detroit in August, playing in three games, before the Tigers designated him as well.

Combine Presley's Detroit tenure with his half-season in Milwaukee, and he batted .198 (24-for-121) with three home runs, 11 RBIs and a .558 OPS. He owns a .253 career average and .678 OPS over parts of seven big league seasons.

Presley profiles similarly to Tyler Collins, another left-handed hitter who can play all three outfield spots. If the Tigers don't add any other candidates, Collins would head into Spring Training with a strong chance to play in center, either as a primary starter or in a platoon with prospect JaCoby Jones. If Collins becomes the primary starter and Jones heads to Triple-A Toledo for more seasoning, an opportunity would open for someone to fill a reserve role behind him.

Perez, a 30-year-old right-handed hitter, played parts of three seasons as a reserve with the Giants from 2013-15 before spending this past season in the Cubs' system. He, too, plays all three outfield positions, as well as second and third base.

Perez batted .248 (91-for-407) in 108 games at Triple-A Iowa with six home runs, 30 RBIs and 12 stolen bases. He's a .224 (51-for-228) career hitter in the Majors. The site 2080Baseball.com first reported the deal.

The moves expand the list of Spring Training invites to at least nine. Infielder Omar Infante, catcher Miguel Gonzalez and pitchers A.J. Achter, Ruben Alaniz, William Cuevas, Logan Kensing and Dustin Mollken agreed to Minor League deals with non-roster invites earlier this month. More are likely to come following the holidays as players holding out for big league contracts try to find spots in camps before pitchers and catchers report in mid-February.

Jason Beck has covered the Tigers for MLB.com since 2002. Read Beck's Blog, follow him on Twitter @beckjason and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.