Pirates Sign Maholm To Extension

The Pittsburgh Pirates announced they have agreed to terms with left-handed pitcher Paul Maholm on a three-year contract, with a club option to extend the deal through the 2012 season.

Maholm established career highs in starts (31), innings pitched (206.1) and strikeouts (139) in his third full season with Pittsburgh in 2008. He ranked third among National League lefthanders in innings pitched and posted the ninth-lowest ERA (3.11) among all pitchers in the league from May 31 through the end of the season. In addition, Maholm pitched 6.0 innings or more in 20 straight starts from May 8 through August 24 and in 26 of his 31 starts overall.

"We are pleased to reach agreement on a contact that gives us the ability to keep Paul Maholm in a Pirates uniform through the 2012 season," said Pirates General Manager Neal Huntington. "Paul took a big step forward in 2008 and became a very consistent and reliable starting pitcher. He exhibits many of the positive attributes the Pirates seek in players and we look forward to him playing a major role in our success moving forward."

The 26-year-old Maholm was originally selected by Pittsburgh in the first round of the 2003 First-Year Player Draft; the eighth overall pick in the draft. He made his Major League debut with the Pirates in 200 and has made a total of 96 starts in over three seasons with Pittsburgh.

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