Phillies bring back relief pitcher Chad Durbin
The Phillies possessed middle relief options in a stable of young pitchers. Instead, they opted Monday for a familiar name.
Chad Durbin agreed to return on a one-year deal, according to a source, as the Phillies continue to add to the fringes of a full roster. The Phillies hope he will add some veteran stability to a bullpen that endured its share of disasters in 2012.
ESPN.com reported Durbin, 35, will earn $1.1 million with an extra $350,000 of possible incentives. There is reportedly a club option for 2014.
Durbin had his best season while with the Phillies in 2008 and was a viewed as a popular personality in the team's clubhouse. He pitched for three years in Philadelphia.
After a lost season with Cleveland in 2011, Durbin was reliable in 2012 for Atlanta. He posted a 2.33 ERA over 58 innings after allowing three home runs in his first three appearances with the Braves. Durbin was mostly used in the seventh inning.
Known as a durable pitcher who could go multiple innings in various roles, Durbin's usage greatly differed in 2012. He recorded more than three outs in a single outing just three times; in 2008 with the Phillies he did that 29 times.
Last season, Durbin pitched on back-to-back days a career-high 19 times. He appeared in a career-high 76 games but pitched only 61 innings. Durbin averaged 75 1/3 innings per season while with the Phillies.
Durbin was especially good with inherited runners in 2012. He permitted 11 of 44 (25 percent) to score. Among National League clubs, only the Cubs and Astros allowed a higher percentage of inherited runners to score than the Phillies (32 percent).
His addition makes for one fewer available relief job. Jonathan Papelbon, Mike Adams and Antonio Bastardo are locks. There are three other jobs for young arms like Phillippe Aumont, Justin De Fratus, Jeremy Horst, Mike Stutes, Jake Diekman and B.J. Rosenberg.
Durbin made $900,000 with Atlanta in 2012. The Phillies' 40-man roster is full and a corresponding move must be made to accommodate Durbin.
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