The San Diego Padres have agreed to terms with right-hander Tim Stauffer and left-hander Arturo Lopez on minor-league deals, and have confirmed the signing of right-hander Freddy Garcia, the team has announced:
Club also agrees on minor league contracts w/ Spring invites w/ RHPs Freddy Garcia & Tim Stauffer and LHP Arturo Lopez #Padres— San Diego Padres (@Padres) January 29, 2013
Stauffer, 30, was a big part of the club's rotation in 2011 -- tossing 185⅓ innings across 31 starts -- but missed most of last season recovering from surgery to repair the flexor mass tendon in his throwing elbow. San Diego pushed Stauffer from their 40-man roster in October, and the right-hander elected free agency shortly thereafter.
More: Padres sign Freddy Garcia | Team Site: Gaslamp Ball
Stauffer is still on the mend from his elbow injury but is believed to be just a few weeks behind the pitchers who are in good health. There's a chance the seven-year veteran will find his way back into the Padres' rotation, but he will face a heavy competition to get even a wisp of the No. 5 spot.
Lopez, 29, had his one and only big-league stint with the Padres in 2009, throwing just 2⅓ innings in relief. The southpaw left professional baseball following that season, but hooked up with a club in Mexico City in 2011, where he has pitched the last two seasons.
Lopez's numbers with the Mexican League club have been largely unimpressive, as he has amassed a 7.32 ERA and 7.6 K/9 in 102 innings in the two-year span.