The Red Sox, unhappy with their bullpen options, today signed 40-year-old lefty Alan Embree to a minor-league deal that included an invitation to spring training.
With veteran Brian Shouse not particularly impressive and prospect Dustin Richardson getting hurt then quickly optioned out, the Red Sox were seeking a lefthander who could complement Hideki Okajima in the bullpen.
Embree, 40, spent 2009 with the Colorado Rockies, going 2-2 with a 5.84 ERA in 36 relief appearances. His season was cut short when a batted ball fractured his right tibia on July 10.
The 16-year Major League veteran owns a 39-45 record with 25 saves and a 4.59 ERA in 882 career games/four starts with the Indians (1992, 1995-96), Braves (1997-98), Diamondbacks (1998), Giants (1999-2001), White Sox (2001), Padres (2002, 2006), Red Sox (2002-05), Yankees (2005), Athletics (2007-08) and Rockies (2009). He ranks ninth all-time among Major League left-handers and second among active southpaws with 878 career relief outings.
He returns for a second stint in the Red Sox organization after going 8-9 with four saves and a 4.69 ERA in 211 relief appearances with the club from 2002-05. He allowed earned runs in just one of his 19 postseason games with Boston, going 1-0 with a 1.29 ERA (2 ER/14.0 IP). Embree induced a ground ball by Ruben Sierra for the final out of Game 7 of the 2004 ALCS in Yankee Stadium.