According to ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick, the Padres have signed veteran right-hander Freddy Garcia to a minor league contract. He’ll also get an invite to spring training, where he’ll compete for a spot in San Diego’s starting rotation.
Garcia, 36, posted a 5.20 ERA in 17 starts and 13 relief appearances with the Yankees last season. While he had his highest strikeout rate since 2007, he served up 18 home runs in just 107 1/3 innings.
There might not be room for Garcia in the Padres’ rotation once Andrew Cashner, Cory Luebke and Joe Wieland are all healthy, but San Diego could be a good fit for his fly ball tendencies, even with the new dimensions at PETCO Park.
The Rays announced on Wednesday that the club purchased the contract of lefty reliever Jonny Venters from Triple-A Durham. The 33-year-old hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2012 due to a continuous battle with arm injuries. The Rays note that he has undergone two and a half Tommy John surgeries, which is a number that seems to be in dispute.
Venters signed a minor league contract with the Rays in December. With Durham so far this season, he gave up two runs (one earned) on four hits and five walks with six strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings.
Before the injuries, Venters was among the best relievers in 2010-11. In those two seasons, he posted a combined 1.89 ERA with 189 strikeouts and 82 walks in 171 innings.