ARLINGTON -- The Rangers are bringing back versatile right-handed pitcher Jesse Chavez on a two-year contract, the club announced on Friday.
Chavez split last season with the Rangers and the Cubs, combining to go 5-2 with a 2.55 ERA and a 1.06 WHIP in 62 games and 95 1/3 innings. The 1.06 WHIP was the 14th lowest among 152 pitchers with at least 90 innings pitched.
Texas signed Chavez early last Spring Training, and he began the season as a long reliever and gradually moved into a late-inning role. He went 3-1 with a 3.50 ERA in 30 appearances before being traded on July 19 to the Cubs for Minor League left-handed pitcher Tyler Thomas.
Chavez flourished with the Cubs. In 32 outings, he compiled a 2-1 record with a 1.15 ERA and a 0.79 WHIP. In 39 innings, Chavez allowed 26 hits and five walks while striking out 42. He also recorded four saves.
Chavez is an 11-year veteran who has been used as a starter and a reliever in his career. He made 21 starts for the Angels in 2017 and another 47 for the Athletics from '14-15. The Cubs were his ninth organization, and his one scoreless inning in relief against the Rockies in the National League Wild Card Game marked his first career postseason appearance.
The 35-year-old was not used as a starter this past season, but he has expressed a strong desire to return to that role at some point. The Rangers have multiple openings in their rotation, with only Mike Minor guaranteed a spot as of now. Veterans Drew Smyly and Edinson Volquez, both coming off Tommy John surgery, are also possibilities.