Report: A's sign catcher Perez to minor league contract

Carlos Perez, A's

The A's secured some backstop depth Friday, as the team reportedly signed catcher Carlos Perez to a minor league deal with a cash incentive should he reach the majors.

MLB insider Jon Heyman first reported the signing, noting the 30-year-old catcher will make $650,000 if he plays in the Majors in 2021. 

Perez mainly is a minor league journeyman, but he has spent parts of four seasons in the big leagues. He was a member of the A's 60-man player pool last year, but did not see time in the Majors. 

His best major league season came in 2015, when he posted a .250 average and a .645 OPS over 86 games with the Los Angeles Angels. His production has dropped since then, particularly offensively. The last time Perez played in the Majors came in 2018, when he saw action in 20 games for the Texas Rangers.

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Sean Murphy has the A's starting catching job locked up for the immediate future, and Austin Allen and prospect Jonah Heim likely will slot above Perez on the team's depth chart, but Perez's experience in the big leagues could help mentor the two.

Allen, 27, has spent portions of two seasons in the majors, but has struggled to get going offensively. In 48 games (14 with Oakland) he owns a .208/.262/.292 line.

Heim, a 25-year-old switch-hitter, debuted last year with the A's, but also was slow to start up at the plate. In 13 games, he posted a .211 average and .479 OPS. 

Perez has racked up 212 career games in the Majors, and could be in line for more early on in the season if he has an encouraging spring.