Pirates Sign Lopez
Javier Lopez
Javier Lopez

Posted Dec 19, 2009

The Pittsburgh Pirates announced they have signed left-handed pitcher Javier Lopez to a one-year contract.

Lopez, 32, spent the last four seasons with Boston, where he made a total of 172 appearances for the Red Sox and posted a 3.30 ERA (128.1ip/47er). He pitched a majority of the 2009 season with Triple-A Pawtucket, where he went 1-1 with a 3.18 ERA in 38 appearances. Lopez, who pitched for Puerto Rico during the World Baseball Classic in March, also made 14 appearances with Boston before being optioned to Pawtucket on May 9.

“Javier has proven to be a capable Major League reliever who has the ability to attack both left and right handed hitters,” said Pirates GM Neal Huntington. “He will provide a solid option for Manager John Russell in 2010.”

Originally selected by Arizona in the fourth round of the 1998 First-Year Player Draft, Lopez was traded to Colorado on 3/18/03 and made a career-high 75 appearances with the Rockies in 2003, giving up just two earned runs in his first 30 big league outings. Lopez, who also made 29 appearances with Arizona in 2005 after being claimed off waivers by the Diamondbacks on April 14, has gone 11-7 with four saves and a 4.62 ERA in 343 Major League relief appearances over the last seven seasons (2003-09).

Among all Major League left-handed relievers with at least 50.0 innings pitched in 2008, Lopez posted the fifth-lowest ERA (2.43) while making 70 appearances with Boston. He pitched in the post season with Boston in 2007 and 2008 and made one scoreless appearance in the 2007 World Series Championship over Colorado.

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