The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim have agreed to sign left-hander Mark Mulder to a minor league contract, according to a baseball source with knowledge of the negotiations. The deal includes an invitation to major league spring training, and could top $6 million if all incentive clauses are met, according to the source. Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe adds that the contract includes a $1 million guaranteed base salary if Mulder makes the major league roster.
Mulder, 36, announced last month that he was looking to make a comeback after last appearing in the major leagues in 2008. Crasnick noted then that the southpaw is now using a delivery similar to that of Dodgers' reliever Paco Rodriguez, in hopes of pitching effectively again.
Mulder will compete for a spot in the Angels' starting rotation in spring training, along with options like Hector Santiago, Tyler Skaggs, and Joe Blanton. With Jerome Williams, Tommy Hanson and Jason Vargas all departing this offseason, the Angels' rotation is far from complete, allowing Mulder a significant chance of cracking the team's roster on Opening Day.
According to a baseball source, Mulder had interest from teams on both the east and west coasts and was evaulating several offers as of the weekend. Cafardo reported that he threw for the Diamondbacks, Giants, Phillies and Padres in addition to the Angels, but it is unclear if those teams made offers.
Mulder, a two-time All-Star, appeared in six total games in 2007 and 2008 after posting a 7.14 ERA in 17 starts with the Cardinals in 2006. For his nine-year major league career with the Athletics (2000-2004) and Cardinals (2005-2008), he is 103-60 with a 4.18 ERA in 205 appearances (203 starts).
Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com first reported the agreement between the sides, with Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com noting that the contract could reach $6 million in incentives.