The New York Mets have signed reliever Jose Valverde to a minor league deal that includes a spring training invite, according to a team announcement. Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports that Valverde will earn a base salary of $1 million if he makes the major league roster.
Valverde, who turns 36 in March, spent the first part of last season with the Tigers after signing a minor league deal in early April. He posted a 5.59 ERA in 18 appearances, and was released in early August.
"Papa Grande" will join a Mets' bullpen that has already added Kyle Farnsworth this offseason, replacing free agent Frank Francisco. If Farnsworth and Valverde make the major league roster, they will provide a veteran presence in a relatively young group of relievers.
The Diamondbacks were also interested in Valverde this offseason, leading to rumors of an agreement between the sides being denied by the reliever in December. Valverde switched representation this winter, leaving Boras Corporatiion for Praver/Shapiro.
In eleven major league seasons with the Diamondbacks (2003-2007), Astros (2008-2009) and Tigers (2010-2013), Valverde has posted a career 26-32 record and 3.19 ERA while posting 286 saves in 507 appearances.