The Milwaukee Brewers added some left-handed bullpen relief by signing free agent Neal Cotts to a one year deal, worth a reported $3 million. The deal was announced by President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Doug Melvin this morning.
Needing to make room on the 40-man roster for Cotts, the Brewers designated infielder/outfielder Elian Herrera for assignment.
Cotts, who turns 35 during spring training, went 2-9 with a 4.32 ERA and two saves in a career-high 73 relief appearances last season with the Texas Rangers. He owns a career record of 20-24 with a 4.05 ERA and 4 saves in 415 games with the White Sox, Cubs and Rangers.
Over the last two seasons, Cotts held opponents to a .223 batting average with 128 strikeouts in just 123.2 innings pitched.
Cotts enjoyed his best season in the majors two years ago, going 8-3 with a 1.11 ERA and 1 save in 58 relief appearances with Texas. His 2013 ERA was the second lowest in the Major Leagues among relievers and marked the lowest by a reliever in Rangers franchise history.
Cotts also pitched in each game of the 2005 World Series (4 games) for the Chicago White Sox. He earned a victory in Game 2 against Houston.
The Brewers are still looking for more bullpen help. They have recently been in discussions with the Phillies about a possible deal for closer Jonathan Papelbon. It’s also possible they could re-sign Francisco Rodriguez.