Phillies sign reliever Ernesto Frieri to a minor league contract

AP Photo/The Tampa Bay Times

Ernesto Frieri has been a mess over the past two seasons, but CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reports that the rebuilding Phillies have decided to take a flyer by signing him to a minor league contract.

Frieri had an excellent run in San Diego and saved 71 games over two seasons with the Angels while missing a ton of bats, but he hasn’t looked anything like that pitcher since. The 30-year-old struggled to the tune of a 7.34 ERA between the Angels and Pirates in 2014 and posted a 4.63 ERA with diminished velocity over 22 appearances with the Rays last season before being designated for assignment. He finished the year at the Triple-A level. As a fly ball pitcher, home runs have always been an issue with him, but it’s been even more pronounced of late. He has allowed 17 home runs in 65 innings over the last two seasons. That’s not good.

According to Heyman, Frieri would earn a base salary of $850,000 if he makes the major league roster. It’s worth a shot for Philadelphia, who should have a bunch of young and inexperienced arms in their bullpen.