KANSAS CITY -- The one thing the Royals know about right-hander Joe Blanton: his arm should be rested.
Blanton, 34, was signed Friday by the Royals to a Minor League deal with a Spring Training invite. Blanton hasn't pitched since last April when he retired from baseball after two starts with Triple-A Sacramento, Oakland's top affiliate, posting a 5.23 ERA and a 1.548 WHIP.
Blanton last pitched in the Majors in 2013 with the Angels, making 20 starts in 28 appearances -- he had a 2-14 record with a 6.04 ERA.
"You can never have too much depth," Royals general manager Dayton Moore said by phone.
Blanton recently worked out for several clubs, including the Royals.
"Our scouts liked what they saw," Moore said. "He's a guy who has had a successful Major League career. I'm glad he is going to have a chance to come in and compete for a job with us."
Blanton has an 85-89 record over his 10-year career with a 4.51 ERA. Arguably his best season came with the A's in 2007, when he went 14-10 with a 3.95 ERA and a 1.217 WHIP. That season, he logged a career-high 230 innings.
Blanton also is 2-0 with a 4.02 ERA in 10 postseason appearances.
Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jflanagankc. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.