The Nationals signed veteran Kelly Shoppach to a minor league contract today and assigned him to Class AAA Syracuse, adding catching depth and experience to their minor league system.

Shoppach, 33, hit .196/.293/.346 in 125 plate appearances for the Mariners this season before they released him. He has appeared in nine major league seasons. Last year, he hit .233/.309/.425 while playing for the Red Sox and Mets.

The Nationals demoted third baseman Carlos Rivero to Class AA Harrisburg yesterday to make room on the Syracuse roster.