By Mike DiGiovanna
8:15 AM PST, December 6, 2013
The Angels have signed veteran left-handed relief specialist Clay Rapada to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training.
Rapada, 32, has a 4.06 earned run average in 152 big league games over seven seasons with six teams — the Chicago Cubs, Detroit Tigers, Texas Rangers, Baltimore Orioles, New York Yankees and Cleveland Indians. He has held left-handers to a .164 average.
Rapada spent most of 2013 in triple-A and made only four major league appearances, all with the Indians. But he had a solid 2012 season with the Yankees, going 3-0 with a 2.82 ERA in 38 1/3 innings over 70 appearances.
The Angels have only one established left-hander in the bullpen, veteran Sean Burnett, who appeared in only 13 games last season before suffering an elbow injury and undergoing surgery in August. Burnett is scheduled to begin a throwing program in early January and is expected to be ready for spring training.
With the Texas Rangers acquiring left-handed-hitting slugger Prince Fielder and the Seattle Mariners reportedly on the verge of signing left-handed-hitting second baseman Robinson Cano, it would benefit the Angels to have a second left-hander in the bullpen.
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