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12/23/08 9:10 PM EST

Nats sign five to Minor League deals

Contracts include invitations to Spring Training in 2009

WASHINGTON -- The Nationals signed infielder Jose Castillo, outfielder Corey Patterson, catcher Gustavo Molina and pitchers Jorge Sosa and Gustavo Chacin to Minor League contracts with an invitation to Spring Training.

Castillo appeared in 127 games in 2008 with the Giants and Astros and hit a combined .246 with six home runs and 37 RBIs.

Chacin is 25-15 with a 4.18 ERA during his Major League career, including 58 starts with the Blue Jays from 2004-07. Chacin made 11 starts this past season for Class A Dunedin after having his '07 season end prematurely because of a left shoulder injury.

Molina appeared in two games this past season with the Mets and saw action in 74 games with Triple-A New Orleans. He hit .206 with seven homers and 27 RBIs for New Orleans.

Patterson, 29, played for the Reds in 2008 and hit .205 with 10 home runs and 38 RBIs. He is best known as a member of the Cubs, who won a division title with him as their center fielder in 2003.

Sosa, 31, pitched in 20 games for the Mets this past season and had an ERA over 7.00.

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.