Extra Bases

Nelson agrees to minor league deal with Red Sox

According to a report on MLB.com, veteran reliever Joe Nelson has reached an agreement with the Red Sox on a minor league deal.

The 35-year-old Nelson, who had a cup of coffee with the Red Sox in 2004 [2 2/3 innings pitched], had a rough 2009 as a member of the Tampa Bay Rays, posting a 4.02 ERA and striking out 36 to go with 27 walks in 42 relief appearances before spending August and September in the minors. Nelson also spent time in the Red Sox minor league system in 2002.

Nelson’s best season was with the Florida Marlins in 2008 when he had a 2.00 ERA to go along with 60 strikeouts and 22 walks in 54 innings.

“They pretty much have five spots [in the bullpen] locked up, barring injuries, and there’s still two spots,” Nelson said in a phone interview with MLB.com on Monday night. “But they’re not bringing in a whole bunch of guys [to spring training].

“For me, I had multiple teams making multiple offers, and they just seemed like the best fit.”

In other ex-Red Sox player news, the San Francisco Giants have agreed to terms on a minor league contract with former Red Sox starter/reliever Byung-Hyun Kim as a non-roster invite to spring training.

Kim hasn’t pitched in the majors since spending 2007 with the Colorado Rockies, Arizona Diamondbacks, and Florida Marlins.

In May 2003, Kim was traded by the Diamondbacks to the Red Sox in exchange for infielder Shea Hillenbrand. Kim went 8-5 with a 3.18 ERA for the Sox in 49 games, five as a starter, during the 2003 season. Kim appeared in just seven games for Boston in 2004 and was eventually traded to the Rockies in 2005. The 31-year-old Kim owns a career record of 54-60 with a 4.42 ERA in nine major league seasons.


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