The Royals have signed infielder Clint Barmes, and pitchers Ross Ohlendorf and Brian Duensing to minor league deals, according to Chris Cotillo.
The 36-year old Barmes is a 13-year Major League veteran with the Rockies, Astros, Pirates, and Padres. He is a lifetime .245/.294/.379 hitter, spending most of his time at shortstop. Last season with the Padres, he hit .232/.281/.353 in 224 plate appearances. The right-handed hitter was a plus defender in his prime, and is still a very serviceable defensive player who can play all over the infield and even has some experience in the outfield. Barmes will try to make the team as a utility infielder, but will most likely begin the year in Omaha.
Ohlendorf is an eight-year Major League veteran with the Yankees, Pirates, Padres, Nationals, and Rangers. His best year was in 2011 when he won 11 games with a 3.92 ERA, but he has had trouble staying in the big leagues since then. The 32-year old right-hander had a 3.92 ERA with 19 strikeouts in 19 1/3 innings of relief for the Rangers last year. Ohlendorf is a Princeton grad, beginning his career there just a few seasons after Royals starting pitcher Chris Young left school. Ohlendorf will likely serve as depth in Omaha, with an outside chance of competing for a bullpen role.
Duensing is a Nebraska grad and one-time teammate with Royals left-fielder Alex Gordon and each were groomsmen in each other's weddings. The left-handed relief specialist has spent his entire seven-year career with the Twins, posting a 4.13 ERA in 649 career innings. He had a 4.25 ERA in 48 2/3 innings, although he had a reverse split last year against lefties. In his career, lefties are hitting just .238/.289/.325 against him, according to Baseball Reference. He immediately becomes one of the top candidates for a lefty relief role for the Royals, competing with Brian Flynn and Scott Alexander. If he makes the team, he will earn a Major League salary of $2 million, according to Twins beat writer Mike Bernadino. The 32-year old originally hails from Marysville, Kansas.
Duensing and Barmes can opt out on 3/29, per source. Ohlendorf on 3/20. #Royals— Jeffrey Flanagan (@FlannyMLB) February 18, 2016