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Nationals sign Oliver Perez to minor league deal

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VIERA, Fla. — The Nationals have agreed to a minor league deal with Oliver Perez, according to a club source, confirming multiple reports that the left-hander had signed with Washington.

Perez was released by the Mets on Monday, his last act as a member of the organization getting booed off the field at Digital Domain Park after allowing back-to-back home runs to Jeff Frazier and Brian Bixler, the first two batters he faced.

In four-plus seasons in New York, Perez was 29-29 with an average ERA above 6.

Joining the Nationals, Perez will be reunited with pitching coordinator Spin Williams, who was the pitching coach for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2004 when Perez was 12-10 with a 2.98 ERA and 239 strikeouts.

The Nationals will not have Perez in major league camp, a source said, hoping that Williams can help to get the once-flamethrowing left-hander back on track.

Perez was 0-5 last year with the Mets and allowed nine earned runs in 9.2 innings of work this spring. A longtime starter, Perez was moved to the Mets’ bullpen last season where he pulled in a 6.80 ERA. In 2009 he was 3-4 with a 6.82 ERA.

The Mets are on the hook for almost all of Perez’s $12 million salary. The Nationals would need to pay him only the major league minimum if he is on the major league team.

— The team also announced on Wednesday via their twitter account that the Nationals had claimed left-hander Lee Hyde off waivers from the Braves and moved Stephen Strasburg to the 60-day disabled list to make room for Hyde.

Hyde was optioned to Triple-A Syracuse.

The 26-year-old underwent Tommy John surgery in 2007 and is 10-9 with nine saves and a 3.04 ERA since returning to the field.

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About the Author
Amanda Comak

Amanda Comak

Amanda Comak covers the Washington Nationals and comes to The Washington Times from the Cape Cod Times and after stints with MLB.com and the Amsterdam (N.Y.) Recorder. A Massachusetts native and 2008 graduate of Boston University, Amanda can be reached at acomak@washingtontimes.com and you can follow her on Twitter @acomak.

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