Indians ink reliever Thatcher to Minor League deal

The Indians on Thursday signed veteran southpaw Joe Thatcher to a Minor League contract with an invitation to Spring Training, adding another arm to their potential bullpen mix. Thatcher has pitched in the big leagues since 2007, and he's logged an 11-16 record with a 3.38 career ERA in 405 games.

Thatcher, 34, appeared in 43 games for the Astros last season and logged a 3.18 ERA over 22 2/3 innings of work. The southpaw was not drafted out of college and began his career in the independent Frontier League before joining the Brewers organization in 2005.

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Thatcher, who has played for the Padres, D-backs, Angels and Astros during his career, has never pitched more than 45 innings in a big league season.

Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.