Ian Kennedy announced on Instagram that he has a deal with the Texas Rangers. Reports indicate that it is a minor league deal for the righthanded reliever.
Kennedy, 38, was originally a first round pick of the New York Yankees, and was sent to the Arizona Diamondbacks after the 2009 season in the three-way deal that saw Curtis Granderson go from Detroit to New York and sent Max Scherzer to the Tigers. He was a starter until 2019, when he moved to the bullpen for the final two years of his deal with the Kansas City Royals.
Signed to a minor league deal by the Rangers prior to the 2021 season, he made the team out of spring training and was installed as the team’s closer. He was dealt to the Philadelphia Phillies in the trade that also sent Kyle Gibson and Hans Crouse to the Phillies for Spencer Howard, Kyle Gowdy and Josh Gessner.
Kennedy put up a 4.13 ERA and a 6.21 FIP for the Phillies over the final two months of the 2021 season, and then had a 5.36 ERA and 5.58 FIP in 57 appearances for the Arizona Diamondbacks last year.
The Rangers have been looking to add a piece or two to their bullpen this offseason, though I’m not sure I’d expect Kennedy to make the roster. The Rangers did value his experience and veteran presence in 2021, however, and given what looks to be a very young bullpen for 2023, Texas may see value in having someone who has been around the block a few times in the pen this year.