As expected, the Dodgers finalized their one-year deal with switch-hitting catcher Dioner Navarro today. The contract will pay Navarro $1 million in 2011, per the Associated Press. Navarro, who played with the Dodgers in 2005 and the beginning of 2006, followed his 2008 All-Star campaign by hitting .212/.263/.306 during the last two seasons. He is one of seven switch hitters to catch for the Los Angeles Dodgers (a list that includes the immortal Derrel Thomas!).
The Dodger press release noted that Navarro was the first (and only) catcher in major league history to start and end a triple play. Navarro's 2-6-2 triple play came on September 2, 2006 while with Tampa Bay, on a strikeout and botched double steal by Seattle.
Also from the press release:
Navarro and his wife Sherley have made several school visits in the Tampa Bay area and in 2009 the pair started the Dioner Navarro Family Foundation, which counts St. Joseph ’s Hospital in Tampa as one of its main beneficiaries. In 2003, Sherley suffered a brain aneurysm and was given a slim chance to live, but made a full recovery at St. Joseph ’s. Navarro has always worn No. 30 in honor of Sept. 30, 2003, the day his wife was expected to pass away, according to the doctors.
I should note that Navarro wore number 68 in his cup of coffee with the Yankees in 2004, and he wore number 41 with the Dodgers in 2005, but has worn number 30 ever since. Davey Lopes is currently penciled (dry erased?) in for number 30, but might he give it up for Navarro?
The Dodgers now have a full 40-man roster.