BY: ED COLE
GLENDALE, Ariz. – First it was Zack Greinke. Then it was Shelby Miller. Now, it’s Tyler Clippard.
The Arizona Diamondbacks pitching staff has gotten a complete makeover over the last two months, the latest addition being Clippard, who the team inked to a reported two-year, $12.25 million contract.
Clippard deal with #DBacks is official, per source: $4M signing bonus, $4.1M salary in 2016, and $4.15M salary in 2017.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) February 8, 2016
In 69 appearances last season with the Oakland A’s and New York Mets, Clippard went 5-4 with 19 saves and a 2.92 ERA (23 ER in 71.0 IP). He held opponents to a .186 average (49-for-263), the 10th best mark in Major League Baseball. Clippard also held hitters to a .133 mark (8-for-60) with runners in scoring position.
Clippard – who will turn 31 on Sunday – is the only pitcher in the Majors to appear in at least 69 games in each of the last six seasons (2010-15), and he leads all relievers with 34 wins, 440 games and 464.1 innings pitched during that span. Clippard ranks fourth in the Majors since 2010 with 519 strikeouts, trailing Craig Kimbrel (563), Aroldis Chapman (546) and Kenley Jansen (528), and he’s eighth in opponent’s batting average (.185).
In nine Major League seasons with the New York Yankees (2007), Washington Nationals (2008-14), A’s (2015) and Mets (2015), Clippard has held batters to a .191 average, 2.88 ERA (180 ER in 562.0 IP), 53 saves, 158 holds and a 1.09 WHIP in 489 games. Clippard was originally selected by the Yankees in the ninth round of the 2003 First-Year Player Draft.
Arizona made another move on Monday, designating left-handed pitcher Will Locante for assignment. Locante, 25, was 2-4, with a 5.79 ERA (27 ER in 42.0 IP) in 44 appearances with Double-A Mobile last season.