Twins sign three to Minor League deals

Twins sign three to Minor League deals

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins have signed three players to Minor League deals, with invitations to Major League Spring Training.

Left-handed pitchers Mike Venafro and Carmen Cali and first baseman/DH Ken Harvey will all try to compete for roster spots in Fort Myers, Fla., this spring.

The Twins would like to add a left-hander to the bullpen. Venafro, 33, was 1-0 with a 2.45 ERA in seven games with the Rockies last season. Cali, 28, had short stints with the Cardinals in 2004 and 2005, and was 1-6 with a 4.07 ERA in 50 Minor League appearances in 2006.

Harvey, 28, was once a very promising Royals prospect. After a strong rookie season in 2003, he was named to the American League All-Star team in 2004 following a spectacular first half in which he battled with the Orioles' Melvin Mora for the AL batting title lead. Since then he has struggled to produce the same success. He has played in just 12 Major League games over the past two seasons due to recurring back problems in 2005, and he underwent surgery on his left Achilles tendon before the 2006 season.

The Twins are looking at Harvey to compete for the open DH spot. Harvey has a career .274 batting average, with 27 home runs in 998 at-bats.

Kelly Thesier is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.