Arlington, Texas - The Texas Rangers formally announced today that the club has signed right-handed pitcher Tommy Hanson to a one-year major league contract for the 2014 season. Financial terms were not disclosed, per club policy.
To make room on the 40-man roster for Hanson, the team has placed left-handed pitcher Joseph Ortiz on the 60-day disabled list with a fractured left foot.
Hanson, 27, spent last season with the Los Angeles Angels after seven years in the Atlanta Braves organization to begin his career. He won at least 10 games in each of his first 4 seasons in the major leagues from 2009-12, one of only 8 pitchers with such a career-opening streak since 2000. Hanson opened last year as the Angels' fifth starter, and went 4-3 with a 5.42 ERA (44 ER/73.0 IP) in 15 games/13 starts while enduring stints on the bereavement list, restricted list, and disabled list. He also spent a month with Triple-A Salt Lake, going 0-2 with a 5.49 ERA (12 ER/19.2 IP), and made a rehab start with Inland Empire in the California League.
Hanson finished 3rd in 2009 National League Rookie of the Year voting behind Florida's Chris Coghlan and Philadelphia's J.A. Happ after going 11-4 with a 2.89 ERA (41 ER/127.2 IP) in 21 games/starts following a June promotion. Hanson's 45 wins from his June 7, 2009 debut through the end of 2012 ranked T12th in the National League, while his 592 strikeouts with the Braves from 2009-12 were 13th in the league. He has averaged 8.2 strikeouts-per-9 innings in his major league career.
Ortiz suffered the fractured left foot in his native Venezuela late last month and underwent surgery on January 31. He went 2-2 with a 4.23 ERA (21 ER/44.2 IP) over 32 relief appearances for the Rangers in his major league debut in 2013.
With the addition of Hanson, the Rangers now have 59 players on the spring training roster: a full 40-man roster, 18 non-roster invitations, and Ortiz (60-day DL).
CONFERENCE CALL TODAY: The Texas Rangers will host a media conference call, TODAY, FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 14 at 3:00 p.m. CST. Participating in the conference call will be General Manager Jon Daniels and pitcher Tommy Hanson. Media members wishing to participate in the call should dial 888-339-2688 and use the access code 25104548.
RANGERS SIGN RHP JASON KNAPP: Texas has signed right-handed pitcher Jason Knapp to a minor league contract, and he will be in minor league camp this spring. Knapp has not pitched the last 3 seasons after having right shoulder surgery on June 14, 2011. He has never pitched above A-ball, but the 23-year-old was originally selected by the Phillies in the 2nd round of the 2008 June draft and was rated by Baseball America as the 64th-best prospect in the game prior to the 2010 campaign. Knapp has averaged 12.0 strikeouts-per-9-innings in his minor league career, allowing just 4 home runs in 156.1 frames. His last outing in a minor league contest was with Lake County in the Midwest League on September 5, 2010 vs. Lansing. Knapp was acquired by Cleveland from Philadelphia in a 2009 trade that sent Cliff Lee to the Phillies.