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Texas Rangers sign Joe Beimel

The Texas Rangers have signed free agent LHP Joe Beimel to a major league contract

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Texas Rangers have signed free agent lefthander Joe Beimel to a major league contract, per reports on Twitter.  Beimel, who turns 38 in April, had been signed by the Rangers for the 2012 season, but missed the entire year due to Tommy John surgery.

Beimel put up a 2.20 ERA in 45 IP over 56 games for the Seattle Mariners last season, although that was with peripherals that don't quite match the ERA -- Beimel had a 4.18 FIP while striking out 5.0 batters per 9 and walking 2.8 per 9.

Beimel is, at this stage of his career, pretty much a lefty specialist, a true LOOGY in contrast to someone like Neal Cotts, the lefty reliever the Rangers used for much of 2013 and 2014, who the team was comfortable having face both lefthanders and righthanders.

The Rangers had an open spot on the 40 man roster, so no move is necessary to add Beimel.  My initial assumption is that the major league deal means he's pretty much a lock for the Opening Day roster, but this may be a deal where his salary isn't fully guaranteed.  Tommy Hanson, for example, got a major league deal from the Rangers last year, but it provided that he was only paid $125,000 if he was released before the season started.

UPDATE -- Evan Grant says the deal is non-guaranteed: