The Yankees announced the signing of veteran hurler Tim Redding to a minor league contract Wednesday. Redding was pitching for the Colorado Rockies’ Triple-A affiliate at the time of his release. Astute Yankee fans may remember his previous stint with the club – a disastrous start in 2005 against the Red Sox.
The 32-year-old will likely serve as depth in Triple-A even though the Scranton Wilkes-Barre Yankees boast a rotation anchored by perennial International League All-Star Kei Igawa.
The recent rashes of injuries have abruptly forced Mark Melancon, Ivan Nova and Romulo Sanchez to the big club this year. While it is unlikely the eight-year veteran will see any extended time in the majors this season, injuries can alter any club’s plans at any time. Although not especially successful during his career, Redding is the type of proven big leaguer who can make an emergency spot-start, soak up innings in long relief or bail out a taxed bullpen during the dog days of summer. Remember Aaron Small and Shawn Chacon, who went a combined 17-3 in 2005? This is the type of zero-risk signing that has no conceivable downside and could actually be invaluable to the Yankees in a worst-case scenario. Kudos to Yankee brass for swooping in – you can never have enough pitching.
Anthony Federico covers all levels of the game for Baseball Digest and Gotham Baseball. He is the author of “Must Be Nice” – a loving look at the glory of beer-league softball. Check out www.mustbenicebook.com for more info or follow him on Twitter @AntFeds