The Royals added right-handed former Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Homer Bailey on minor-league contract Saturday, adding another veteran pitcher with big-league experience to the mix as they head into spring training.
Bailey, 32, has spent his entire 12-year career in the majors as a starter, and he has pitched exclusively in the National League for the Reds. Along with the minor-league deal, Bailey received an invitation to spring training with the Royals.
The Texas native has been hampered by injuries in recent seasons and began the 2015-17 seasons on the Reds’ disabled list. He started 20 games in 2018, including opening day. He finished the season with a 1-14 record and 6.09 ERA in 106 1/3 innings. He struck out 75 and walked 33.
The Reds traded Bailey to the Los Angeles Dodgers in a seven-player deal this winter, but he was released and became a free agent. The Dodgers will pay the $23 million owed Bailey from the six-year, $105 million contract he signed with the Reds in 2014. That allowed Bailey to sign with the Royals for the big-league minimum.
Bailey can opt out of his deal with the Royals by March 25, a source confirmed to The Star.
A former first-round draft pick, taken seventh overall in 2004, Bailey has started 212 career games and posted a 67-77 record with a 4.56 ERA, a 1.38 WHIP and a 7.3 strikeouts per nine innings ratio. His resume includes a pair of no-hitters, one in 2012 against Pittsburgh and another in 2013 against San Francisco.
Royals’ pitchers and catchers report to the team’s facility for spring training on Tuesday in Surprise, Ariz.