Right-handed pitcher Brandon Kintzler is set to sign a minor league deal with the Padres, reports Jesse Rogers of ESPN.
Kintzler, 38, appeared in 12 straight MLB seasons from 2010 to 2021, and will look to make it lucky 13 here in 2022. He began his big league career with the Brewers before going to the Twins, Nationals, Cubs, Marlins and Phillies. In 483 career games, he has a 3.50 ERA, largely due to his ground ball-inducing ways. His 16.8% career strikeout rate is below average, but he’s managed to get hitters to put the ball into the dirt on 56.4% of balls in play. He’s also avoided free passes, keeping walks down to a 6.5% rate.
He signed with the Phillies last year but endured a rough campaign. After registering a 2.68 ERA in 2019 and a 2.22 mark in 2020, it shot up to 6.37 last year. He still got strikeouts, walks and grounders at roughly his career rates, but his .369 batting average on balls in play was much worse than previous seasons. He also saw 29.2% of fly balls turn into homers, more than double his career rate. He was designated for assignment after the Phils made some acquisitions at the trade deadline, getting released in early August.
After now sitting on the sidelines for an entire year, Kintzler will gear back up with the Padres. The club has five relievers currently on the injured list, including four on the 60-day IL: Austin Adams, Pierce Johnson, Drew Pomeranz and Craig Stammen. Kintzler will presumably join the Triple-A El Paso Chihuahuas at some point and start to get into game shape, providing the Friars with some veteran bullpen depth.
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