11:17am: Sheldon tweets that Perez will earn $1.25MM if he makes the MLB roster, and has $500K available performance bonuses. He’ll be able to opt out of the contract at the end of camp if he isn’t added to the roster by then.
11:02am: The Reds have added left-hander Oliver Perez to their bullpen competition; he’ll receive a minor-league contract with an invitation to spring training (hat tip to Mark Sheldon of MLB.com).
The 36-year-old veteran has spent parts of 15 seasons pitching in the major leagues (both as a starter and a reliever), and Cincinnati will be his eighth organization on that journey. Most recently, Perez completed a two-year, $7MM contract with the Nationals for whom he appeared in 114 games while pitching to a 4.81 ERA and 4.55 xFIP. His WPA was 0.46 during that time.
While Perez has experienced a wide variance in overall effectiveness throughout his major-league career, his reputation against left-handed hitters is solid. He’s faced them a total of 1,541 times and held them to just a .228/.318/.365 batting line. That skill has still managed to hold up as he’s aged, as evidenced by the .227/.301/.364 batting line of his lefty opponents in 2017.
The Reds’ bullpen was historically bad in 2016, and would’ve been below replacement level overall again last season if it hadn’t been for an excellent showing from closer Raisel Iglesias. That being said, Perez isn’t a lock to crack the club’s major-league roster. Fellow lefty Wandy Peralta is a solid incumbent who figures to be in the Reds’ bullpen come opening day, and Amir Garrett might also be in the mix if he doesn’t land a spot in the rotation. Iglesias and Michael Lorenzen are among the right-handers set to return, and the club also added Jared Hughes and David Hernandez on major-league deals to fill two more vacancies.
Hard to believe it has been 15 years for him. Doesn’t seem that long ago he was a youngster with the Pirates….. god I am getting old…….
I think Cody Reed has the edge on the second lefty spot in the pen.
Garrett still has one option left.. hopefully they send him down and let him start at triple a… still think he can be a solid Mlb starter
2004. there was so much talk of him being the Ace of the bucs for years to come… lefties last in the bigs…
22.50 era and 3.59 whip his first 2 games. Not making a good first impression.