According to a report by Jonah Keri this afternoon, the Washington Nationals have signed veteran reliever Burke Badenhop to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training.
Badenhop, 33, is a veteran of eight major league season, who pitched for the Cincinnati Reds in 2015, putting up a 3.93 ERA, a 3.74 FIP, 20 walks (2.71 BB/9) and 36 Ks (4.88 K/9) in 68 games and 66 ⅓ innings pitched, over which he held left-handed hitters to a .258/.331/.419 line and right-handed hitters to a .276/.314/.357 line, though he did see his ground ball rate drop significantly from 61% in 2014 and a career average 54.4% to 46.7% in 2015.
Badenhop became a free agent when the Reds declined to pick up an option which would have paid the reliever $4M in 2016, opting instead for a $1.5M buyout.
A Detroit Tigers' '05 19th Round pick who was traded to the Miami (then Florida) Marlins in the Miguel Cabrera deal in 2007, Badenhop debuted in the majors with the Fish in 2008 and has pitched for the Marlins, the Tampa Bay Rays, Milwaukee Brewers, Boston Red Sox and the Reds in his major league career, putting up a 3.74 ERA, a 3.59 FIP, 2.69 BB/9 and 6.15 K/9 in 512 ⅓ total innings pitched.
The Nationals haven't officially announced the minor league deal yet, but multiple writers have confirmed Keri's original report:
News to report! Veteran RP Burke Badenhop signed a minor league deal with #Nationals, with invite to spring training.— Jonah Keri (@jonahkeri) February 18, 2016
Burke Badenhop has a minor lg deal & big lg camp invite with Nats, per source. Righty had 3.93 ERA with Reds last season. @jonahkeri first.— James Wagner (@JamesWagnerWP) February 18, 2016