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With Minor League pact, Loewen back with Toronto

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays brought a familiar face back into the fold on Monday afternoon by signing outfielder Adam Loewen to a Minor League contract with an invitation to Spring Training.

Loewen appeared in 14 games for the Blue Jays in 2011 while hitting .188 (6-for-32) with one homer and four RBIs. He joined the organization in 2009 to begin making the transition from pitcher to position player following a series of arm-related injuries.

The 28-year-old parted ways with Toronto after the 2011 season by signing a Minor League deal with the Mets. Loewen went on to appear in 59 games for Triple-A Buffalo and recorded eight homers while posting a .227 average and 26 RBIs.

Loewen will provide some organizational depth, but he is expected to start the season in Triple-A. Even though he switched organizations, Loewen likely will remain in Buffalo after the Bisons officially became the Blue Jays' new affiliate earlier this offseason.

The native of British Columbia also will be a part of Team Canada at the upcoming World Baseball Classic in March. He has spent several years with the national program, including a stint with the senior team.

Loewen was taken with the fourth overall pick of the 2002 First-Year Player Draft by Baltimore. He was one of the game's best pitching prospects until he suffered a left elbow injury, which ended his career on the mound.

It has been four years since Loewen became a full-time outfielder. He is a career .262 hitter with 42 homers and 213 RBIs in 507 games at the Minor League level. Loewen is expected to compete for playing time in Buffalo with the likes of Anthony Gose, Moises Sierra and Ricardo Nanita.

Toronto Blue Jays, Adam Loewen