Rangers sign pitcher Griffin to Minors deal

Right-hander last appeared in a big league game during 2013 season

Rangers sign pitcher Griffin to Minors deal

ARLINGTON -- Right-hander A.J. Griffin, who has not pitched in the Major Leagues since Sept. 24, 2013, has agreed to a Minor League contract with the Rangers. He has been invited to Major League Spring Training.

Griffin, who will turn 28 in January, was a highly regarded young starter for the Athletics in 2012-13 before missing almost all of the past two seasons because of Tommy John surgery. He is on a throwing program and is expected to be ready for Spring Training.

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"He established himself as a workhorse for a division-winning rotation in the AL West," Rangers pro scouting director Josh Boyd said. "We're looking for him to bounce back to form. He's shown an advanced feel to pitch with his secondary stuff in the past, showing good touch with his changeup and curveball."

Griffin, a 13th-round pick in the 2010 Draft out of the University of San Diego, made his big league debut on June 24, 2012. He made 15 starts for the Athletics that year, going 7-1 with a 3.06 ERA and a 1.13 WHIP while helping his team capture the American League West title.

He followed that up by going 14-10 with a 3.83 ERA and a 1.12 WHIP over 32 starts in 2013. He also led the AL that year by allowing 36 home runs.

Griffin developed elbow problems the following spring and underwent Tommy John surgery on April 30, 2014. He made four appearances in the Minor Leagues last season but was shut down after June 18 because of more elbow issues. The Athletics released him in November.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.