The Rays and righty Andrew Kittredge have agreed to a minor league contract, tweets Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. Kittredge hit the injured list with a season-ending UCL issue in August, but agent Brian Grieper tells Topkin that Kittredge has had three bullpen sessions at full intensity without further issue. He’ll be ready for the start of Spring Training with the Rays.
Kittredge, 30, has spent parts of the past four seasons with Tampa Bay, pitching to a combined 4.93 ERA and 4.25 FIP in 111 1/3 innings. Those numbers are skewed a bit by a nightmarish 2018 campaign, but since 2019 Kittredge has tossed 57 1/3 frames with a 3.90 ERA/3.51 FIP, a strong 61-to-14 K/BB ratio and a grounder rate north of 50 percent. Due to the uncertainty surrounding his injury, Kittredge was passed through outright waivers unclaimed at season’s end and opted to become a free agent.
If Kittredge is indeed back up to full strength, he’ll give the Rays an optionable righty with big league experience to complement a group of late-inning relievers that is headlined by righties Pete Fairbanks, Diego Castillo and Nick Anderson, as well as lefty Jose Alvarado.