Hurler Garcia likely to sign deal soon

Hurler Garcia likely to sign soon

After making just three starts for the Tigers in 2008, right-hander Freddy Garcia appears poised to sign a deal for the 2009 season in the next few days.

An SI.com report surfaced Wednesday afternoon that cited the Yankees, Mets, Rangers or White Sox as the most likely destination for Garcia. The report states that Garcia is close to making his decision.

Garcia didn't sign on with a team last season until mid-August, when the Tigers inked him as a Minor League free agent. Garcia, 33, went 1-1 and allowed seven earned runs in 15 innings in three September starts before being shut down due to shoulder tightness.

MLB.com reported in December that Garcia has had two MRIs done on his left shoulder this offseason, and that both revealed tightness, but no structural damage. Garcia had the second MRI after being shut down while pitching in the Venezuelan Winter League. Though Garcia was hopeful of returning to his winter ball team to make a few more starts, the right-hander has not pitched in Venezuela since late November.

Garcia, a 10-year veteran, has a 118-77 record and 4.07 ERA in his career. The two-time All-Star has won at least 10 games in seven different seasons, and he finished the 2001 season with an American League-best 3.05 ERA. However, shoulder problems have kept Garcia from pitching a full season since 2006.

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