The Atlanta Braves have signed right-handed reliever Jeff Bennett to a minor league contract and have invited him to big league camp in spring training.
Bennett was non-tendered by the Milwaukee Brewers last month and became a free agent. He spent the 2005 season in Triple-A with the Nashville Sounds. The 25-year-old Bennett was 2-3 with a 3.03 ERA and 13 saves in 49 games. Bennett allowed 44 hits in 62.1 innings pitched, along with 25 walks and 56 strikeouts.
Bennett's only season in the big leagues was 2004, after Milwaukee had taken him in the Rule 5 Draft. He pitched in 60 games with the Brewers and was 1-5 with a 4.79 ERA, 26 walks, 45 strikeouts, and 78 hits in 71.1 innings pitched.
Originally drafted by the Pirates in the 19th round of the 1998 draft, Bennett will now go to camp at Disney and compete with Wes Obermueller, Lance Cormier, Oscar Villarreal, Brad Baker, and Kevin Barry for a spot in the Atlanta bullpen.
Bill Shanks is the author of Scout's Honor: The Bravest Way To Build A Winning Team, a look inside the Braves‘ traditional scouting and player development philosophies. You can email Bill at email@example.com.
Braves sign reliever Jeff Bennett
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