The Braves continue to add to the list of pitchers who will be battling for a spot in the bullpen with the additions of free agents Jose Veras and Matt Capps, both signed to minor league contracts with invitations to major league spring training camp.
Veras started last season with the Chicago Cubs but struggled with a 8.10 earned run average. He then returned to Houston and was a setup man with the Astros. Veras did much better, posting a 3.03 ERA in 34 games, with 37 games in 32.2 innings.
Just two seasons ago Veras split the season between Houston and Detroit and had 21 saves. He joins Jim Johnson (50) and Jason Grilli (33) as new Braves pitchers that were very successful as closers in 2013.
Capps has missed the last two seasons with shoulder issues. He was a closer with Pittsburgh (2007-2009), Washington (2010) and Minnesota (2010-2012) and has 138 career saves. Capps’ best season was in 2010 when he had 42 saves between the Nationals and Twins. He was an All-Star that season.
Craig Kimbrel will once again be the closer, with Johnson and Grilli expected to be the main setup men. Josh Outman is expected to be the top left-hander, with James Russell also expected to be in the bullpen. That leaves two spots open for Veras and Capps to compete with Arodys Vizcaino, Shae Simmons, Luis Avilan, Juan Jaime, Ian Thomas, Michael Kohn, Donnie Veal and Brandon Cunniff.
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Braves sign Veras and Capps
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Hardball ScoopYesterday at 3:32 PM