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Report: Yankees agree to minor league deal with 1B Ji-Man Choi

The Yankees have signed first baseman/outfielder Ji-Man Choi to a minor league contract, according to his agency. The deal is reportedly worth $700K, and could be worth up to $1.1M with incentives. Choi will be invited to the big league camp next month.

The former Korean pro signed with the Seattle Mariners in 2009, but didn’t make his MLB until 2016 with the Angels. He struggled against big league pitching last year, hitting just .170 in 112 at-bats. However, the 25 year old has enjoyed much more success in the minors; he hit .346 in 53 games at the AAA level last year.

Choi presents himself as a very low-risk investment with possible upside. He will provide depth in the minors at first base, while Greg Bird and Tyler Austin are set to duke it out in spring training for the starting job in the majors. Choi could possibly join the Yankees’ bench later this season if Bird, Austin or Aaron Judge struggle, or if Cashman pulls the trigger on trading Brett Gardner.