Friday, January 24, 2014
© Copyright 2014
Gwinnett Daily Post
The Atlanta Braves weren’t able to re-sign left-handed reliever Eric O’Flaherty as they hoped, but they are bringing back potential insurance for their rotation.
Veteran right-hander Freddy Garcia agreed to a minor league deal on Friday and gives the Braves another starting option for early in the season before free agent signee Gavin Floyd is ready to pitch.
Garcia, who made six appearances for the Braves in September, will receive a base salary of $1.25 million if he makes the team and could double that with incentives. He can request out of the deal on March 25 if not put on the roster.
Garcia, 37, had a 1.65 ERA in 27 1/3 innings for the Braves and made a start in the playoffs against Los Angeles, holding the Dodgers to two runs on six hits over six innings and striking out six.
Floyd is coming off Tommy John elbow surgery and will miss the first couple months of the season. The former Chicago White Sox right-hander received a $4 million contract to sign with the Braves.
With Tim Hudson gone to the San Francisco Giants as a free agent, the Braves’ projected starting rotation to start the season is Mike Minor, Julio Teheran, Kris Medlen, Brandon Beachy and Alex Wood.
But Beachy is coming off a second elbow procedure and Wood may be needed to give the Braves a second lefty in the bullpen.
O’Flaherty received a two-year deal with the Oakland Athletics despite being out until at least June after Tommy John surgery. The only experienced lefty ready to start the season in the Braves bullpen is Luis Avilan. Jonny Venters is coming back from elbow surgery.