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Source: Twins ink Hardy among Minors deals

@dohyoungpark
November 26, 2019

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins have signed left-handed reliever Blaine Hardy to a Minor League deal with an invitation to Major League Spring Training, a source confirmed to MLB.com's Jason Beck. They also agreed to Minor League deals with right-hander Ryan Garton and catcher Juan Graterol, as announced by the Triple-A

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins have signed left-handed reliever Blaine Hardy to a Minor League deal with an invitation to Major League Spring Training, a source confirmed to MLB.com's Jason Beck. They also agreed to Minor League deals with right-hander Ryan Garton and catcher Juan Graterol, as announced by the Triple-A Rochester Red Wings.

Hardy, 32, gives the Twins a left-handed-depth option in the bullpen with significant experience in the Major Leagues. He has a career 3.73 ERA in 233 appearances over six seasons for the Tigers. He pitched to a 4.47 ERA in 44 1/3 innings in 2019 before he was sidelined in August with a left arm injury that ended his season.

Originally a 22nd-round selection by the Royals in the 2008 MLB Draft, Hardy has not posted overwhelming strikeout numbers in the Majors but lowered his WHIP to a career-low 1.15 in '19, while batters recorded an average exit velocity of 84.8 mph off Hardy, the 15th-lowest mark among Major League pitchers with a minimum of 50 batted balls allowed last season.

Hardy was outrighted by the Tigers in October and elected for free agency. He made $1.3 million in 2019 and was entering his final season of arbitration-eligibility.

Garton, 29, had been in the Mariners' organization since 2017 and has a 4.90 career ERA over parts of three Major League seasons with the Rays and Mariners, though he only pitched three innings in the big leagues in '19.

The 30-year-old Graterol was part of the Twins' organization in 2018 and appeared in three games for Minnesota before he spent '19 with the Reds. Graterol has made 67 Major League appearances over four seasons and is a career .272/.320/.336 hitter in the Minor Leagues.

Do-Hyoung Park covers the Twins for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @dohyoungpark and on Instagram at dohyoung.park.