The Pittsburgh Pirates have signed a starting pitcher, one that is familiar to the organization.
According to Bill Brink of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Bucs and Jeff Karstens have agreed on a one-year deal worth $2.5 million, putting an end to an interesting offseason between the two parties.
The Pirates non-tendered Karstens a little over a month ago and what followed was a series of different stories from Karstens and Pirates general manager Neal Huntington on whether or not the Bucs actually attempted to bring the righthander back for the 2013 season.
There wasn’t much of a market for Karstens as a free agent as only the Colorado Rockies showed any interest in the often injured starter.
When healthy, Karstens posted a 3.97 ERA with 6.6 K/9 and 1.5 BB/9 in 90 2 innings, mostly as a starter.
Karstens earned $3.1 million last season and would have earned a raise through the arbitration process. After the Bucs signed catcher Russell Martin, they made the decision to non-tender him, but it was always thought that he could come back at cheaper number, which is exactly how things played out.
His deal is pending a physical and if all goes well, Karstens will get the opportunity to compete for one of the final two rotation spots behind A.J. Burnett, Wandy Rodriguez and James McDonald.
Earlier today I touched on the Pirates interest in Shaun Marcum, but that is probably out the window now that Karstens is back in the fold.