Arlington, Texas – The Texas Rangers announced tonight that the club has agreed to terms, pending the outcome of a physical, with right-handed pitcher Roy Oswalt on a minor league contract. Upon signing, he is expected to join Triple-A Round Rock at some point this weekend.
Oswalt, 34, has spent his entire career in the National League, combining to go 159-93 with a 3.21 ERA over 339 games/326 starts for Houston (2001-10) and Philadelphia (2010-11). Since he arrived in the major leagues in 2001, the only pitchers with more wins than Oswalt are C.C. Sabathia (182), Roy Halladay (179), and Mark Buehrle (162), with Halladay being the only right-hander ahead of him on that list. The only pitchers with a lower ERA in that span are Johan Santana (2.94) and Halladay (3.01).
He has not pitched for any club since last season, when he went 9-10 with a 3.69 ERA (57 ER/139.0 IP) in 23 games/starts for the Phillies. Oswalt had a pair of disabled list stints last year: April 27-May 15 and June 24-Aug. 6 with lower back inflammation.
A three-time All-Star (2005-06-07), Oswalt has finished in the National League’s top six in Cy Young voting on six different occasions, including a career-best third-place in 2004 behind Houston teammate Roger Clemens and Arizona’s Randy Johnson. Oswalt has a pair of 20-win seasons (2004-05), including a league-leading 20 wins in 2004, and has won 15-or-more games 5 times. He led the N.L. with a 2.98 ERA in 2006 and has 7 seasons of 200-or-more innings. His 159 career wins and 1759 strikeouts both rank 11th among active pitchers, while 9 seasons of 10+ wins are tied for 7th-most in that group. Oswalt has a 1.19 career WHIP figure (walks + hits / innings), 5th-best among active pitchers behind only Johan Santana (1.12), Roy Halladay (1.17), Dan Haren (1.17), and Jake Peavy (1.18).
He is 5-2 with a 3.73 ERA (30 ER/72.1 IP) in 13 games/11 starts in his career in the postseason, including one start with the Astros in the 2005 World Series. Oswalt earned the win in 2005 NLCS Game 6 in St. Louis that sent the Astros to their first Fall Classic.
With the signing of a minor league contract, Oswalt would not go on the Rangers 40-man roster.