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Phillies sign Fernando Abad to minor-league deal

Philadelphia adds veteran lefty in hopes to balance out bullpen

MLB: Boston Red Sox at St. Louis Cardinals Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

The Phillies have signed left-handed pitcher Fernando Abad to a minor-league contract with an invitation to spring training, the team announced. He’ll earn $2.5 million if he makes the majors and the deal can max out at $3.1 million, according to our Chris Cotillo.

Craig Mish of SiriusXM first reported that the two sides were close to finalizing the deal and Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports first reported that they had agreed on a contract.

Abad spent last season with the Red Sox, who acquired him in a trade with the Twins during the waiver deadline in 2016. The 32-year-old Abad posted a 3.30 ERA in 48 games with Boston while striking out 37 batters and walking 14 in 43 23 innings pitched.

Before that, Abad played for the Astros, Nationals and Athletics during his eight-year career in the majors. Abad pitched three seasons with Houston from 2010-12, one with Washington in 2013 and two for Oakland from 2014-15 before being granted free agency and signing with the Twins for the 2016 season. For his career, Abad has a 3.65 ERA, a 1.30 WHIP and a 7.7 K/9 ratio over the course of 363 appearances.

Abad gives the Phillies four lefty relievers in spring training, along with Zac Curtis, Hoby Milner, Adam Morgan and Brandon Leibrandt. The Phillies are hoping he could balance out their bullpen since they are looking to begin this season with an eight-man pen.