Scout.com has learned the Braves have signed veteran right-handed reliever Carlos Torres to a minor league contract with an invitation to big league spring training.
Torres joins an impressive list of relievers with big league time that will come to camp on similar non-roster deals, including Alexi Ogando, David Carpenter and Alex Torres.
Carlos Torres spent the last three seasons with the Mets. Last season he appeared in 59 games out of the bullpen and posted a 4.68 ERA. He allowed 61 hits in 57.2 innings, with 18 walks and 48 strikeouts. Torres had his best season in 2014, when he pitched in 73 games (with one spot start) for the Mets and had a 3.06 ERA, with 96 strikeouts in 97 innings. Torres led all major leaguers with 92 innings in 2014.
Torres originally came up with the White Sox in 2009. He pitched in 13 games (six starts) with Chicago in two seasons and then joined the Rockies for the 2012 season. Torres then joined the Mets prior to the 2013 season and actually made nine starts for New York.
The Braves will have numerous other candidates for the bullpen who are on the 40-man roster. Arodys Vizcaino could likely be the closer again. Jason Grilli may win his old job back, but the veteran will have to prove he is healthy after tearing his Achilles tendon last summer. Veteran Jim Johnson was brought back as a free agent. The team acquired lefty Ian Krol from Detroit in the Cameron Maybin trade.
Another left-hander, Evan Rutckyj, was a Rule V pick and has a chance to win a job. Chris Withrow is coming back from Tommy John surgery and is expected to compete for a spot, along with Casey Kelly, Andrew McKirahan, Jose Ramirez, Matt Marksberry, Danny Winkler and Daniel Burawa.
Hunter Cervenka, Ryan Kelly, Madison Younginer, Chris Volstad and David Holmberg will also be in camp as non-roster players.
Also, some pitchers who will compete for jobs in the rotation could find themselves in the hunt for a bullpen job. Williams Perez and Ryan Weber may be at the top of that list, as both could fit as a long reliever. Veteran starters Jhoulys Chacin and Kyle Kendrick are coming to camp as non-roster players. If they fail to get one of the five spots they could also be in the mix in the pen.
The Braves will have plenty of options for the pitching staff once they hit Florida in two weeks.
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