2:19pm: Beimel would earn $1.5MM if he breaks camp with the club and can earn more via incentives, per Grant.
1:03pm: Beimel’s deal is an MLB contract but is not guaranteed, tweets Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News.
12:41pm: The Rangers have signed left-handed reliever Joe Beimel to a one-year, Major League contract, executive vice president of Rangers communications John Blake announced today (on Twitter). Beimel is a client of agent Joe Sroba.
Beimel, who turns 38 next month, spent the 2014 season with the division-rival Mariners, working to an excellent 2.20 ERA in 45 innings of relief. He worked primarily as a lefty specialist, as evidenced by the fact that his 45 innings came over the life of 56 appearances. In 85 plate appearances against Beimel last year, left-handed hitters mustered a putrid .188/.217/.288 batting line. Right-handed bats had a much easier time against Beimel, batting .282/.367/.424.
Beimel’s peripheral stats don’t look as exciting as his ERA, as the lefty struck out just 5.0 hitters per nine and walked 2.8 per nine. His .250 batting average on balls in play and 86.8 percent strand rate were both significant outliers, relative to his career marks, suggesting that some regression is possible. Metrics such as FIP, xFIP and SIERA all pegged Beimel in the 4.09 to 4.18 range.
The Rangers have been known to be on the lookout for left-handed help in the bullpen, as they were reportedly connected to Phil Coke prior to his minor league deal with the Cubs. Texas also briefly claimed left-hander Edgar Olmos off waivers from the Mariners but had the claim reversed after learning of injury problems with Olmos. With Beimel in the fold, he’ll likely join Alex Claudio as a left-handed option in manager Jeff Banister’s bullpen.