The Phillies lacked depth for a starting rotation rife with uncertainty. They hope they found some semblance of insurance Tuesday in the form of Chad Gaudin, a veteran swingman who thrived last season in San Francisco.
Gaudin, 30, was signed to a minor-league contract with an invitation to spring training, where he will likely compete for the fifth starter's job. Jonathan Pettibone is the favorite headed into the spring, although inexperienced Cuban import Miguel Gonzalez is the team's preference.
Behind those two is almost zero depth, and that is why Gaudin was a match. He started 12 games for the Giants in 2013 and posted a 3.03 ERA in 30 appearances overall. (His ERA was 3.53 in starts.) He can start or relieve, which grants him a strong chance to break camp with the Phillies either in the rotation or as a long man.
The righthander missed the final six weeks of last season with carpal tunnel syndrome. He has never required surgery on his elbow or shoulder.
The Phillies are Gaudin's 10th different employer in 12 seasons.
Gaudin was arrested last January at a Las Vegas hospital for allegedly groping a 23-year-old woman on a gurney. He was charged in July with gross lewdness, a misdemeanor.
He pleaded no contest to a disorderly conduct charge in September, according to court documents. He was sentenced to 100 hours of community service and impulse control counseling. Gaudin's attorney said the pitcher was in the emergency room at the time for a kidney problem.