Diamondbacks sign Russell Branyan to minor league deal

The Diamondbacks have signed first baseman Russell Branyan to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training. Branyan hit 25 home runs last season between the Indians and Mariners, a year after his breakout year when he belted 31 home runs. 

The Dbacks currently have Brandon Allen and Juan Miranda competing for time at first base. Allen put up nice numbers in his brief debut last season, and it will take a particularly good spring for him to earn the full time job. Miranda was never given an opportunity in New York and if Triple-A didn't break him, he may be itching for everyday playing time out in the desert.

Branyan, now 35, may land himself a bench spot if he can have a good spring. GM Kevin Towers always gave young players an opportunity in San Diego, and he is likely looking to the future at first base and would only start Branyan is he blew away the competition.      

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