The Orioles are working out the “final details” of a minor league deal with southpaw Fernando Abad, Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com reports (via Twitter). Baltimore also had interest in Abad last season, before he inked a minors pact with the Nationals.
The new contract is a nice early birthday present for Abad, who turns 35 tomorrow. The veteran left-hander didn’t see any MLB action in 2020, as Washington released him in July and Abad didn’t receive a call-up from the Yankees after New York signed him to another minor league deal shortly after the start of the season. Abad also had to deal with an asymptomatic COVID-19 diagnosis that caused him to miss the Nats’ Summer Camp due to quarantine.
A veteran of nine Major League seasons, Abad has posted some quality results during his career, including a 3.13 ERA, 2.58 K/BB rate, and 8.0 K/9 over 233 innings from 2013-17 with the Nationals, A’s, Twins, and Red Sox. He had a minor league deal with the Mets lined up prior to the 2018 campaign, but that signing fell through after Abad was hit with an 80-game PED suspension.
Abad’s only big league action over the last three years was 13 innings of work with the Giants in 2019, so it remains to be seen if he has anything left in the tank to contribute to the Orioles bullpen. There’s no real risk for the O’s, however, as if Abad is anything close to his prime form, he can provide some much-needed experience to a young Baltimore pen.