Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports that the Mets have signed pitcher Héctor Santiago to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. Santiago will earn a salary of $2 million if he makes the major league roster. As a minor leaguer, he will earn $25,000 per month. The contract also includes an opt-out date for July 31 and $100,000 bonuses each for reaching five, 10, 15, 20, and 25 starts.
Santiago, 31, pitched for the White Sox last season, finishing with a 4.50 ERA and a 103/60 K/BB ratio across 102 innings. He made seven starts and 42 relief appearances, the first time he wasn’t a full-time starter since 2012.
Santiago will attempt to earn a spot in the Mets’ bullpen going into the 2019 season.
The Royals are in agreement with right-handed reliever Drew Storen on a minor league deal, the team announced Friday. Per Jon Heyman of MLB Network, the deal is worth $1.25 million if the veteran righty breaks camp with the club this spring. Additional, albeit unspecified incentives will be included in the contract as well.
Storen, 31, is coming off of a protracted absence from any MLB duties. After inking a one-year deal with the Reds in 2017, he sustained a right elbow sprain toward the end of the year and underwent Tommy John surgery that October. He was effectively decommissioned for the club’s entire 2018 run and generated little interest around the league this winter, perhaps due in part to the uninspired 4.45 ERA, 3.8 BB/9, 7.9 SO/9, and career-low -0.2 fWAR he posted across 54 2/3 innings during his last healthy season.
While it’s not immediately clear what kind of performance the Royals can expect from Storen in spring training, they’re not exactly in a position to be choosy. Their bullpen ranked dead last among all MLB teams with a collective 5.04 ERA, 4.85 FIP, and -2.2 fWAR last year, and still appears to be in a state of flux as they approach Opening Day. Skipper Ned Yost told reporters Wednesday that he intends to eschew the traditional closer appointment in 2019 and will instead utilize a combination of right-handers Wily Peralta and Brad Boxberger, lefty Tim Hill, and various others as he tackles high-leverage situations in the future.