Bucs to sign Slaten to Minor League deal

Though terms of the agreement have not all been finalized, left-hander Doug Slaten has chosen to sign a Minor League deal with the Pirates, a source confirmed on Wednesday. The addition of Slaten will give the club another reliever to consider for its bullpen.

Slaten became a free agent in December, when the Nationals decided not to tender a contract to the arbitration-eligible pitcher. His contract with the Pirates will include an invitation to participate in Spring Training.

Slaten, 31, spent close to three months on the disabled list in 2011 due to a left elbow injury. As a result, he made just 31 appearances and logged only 16 1/3 innings. His season ERA finished at 4.41. Slaten struck out 16 and walked three.

Now healthy, Slaten had multiple offers this winter before ultimately deciding that the Pirates provided him with the best fit and opportunity. Though the Pirates haven’t prioritized including a left-handed specialist in the ‘pen in several years, Slaten profiles as an option for that type of role.

– Jenifer Langosch

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