Braves Taking a Chance on Injured Reliever Kirby Yates

ATLANTA (AP) — The Atlanta Braves bolstered their World Series-winning bullpen Monday by signing right-hander Kirby Yates to a two-year, $8.25 million deal.

Yates led the majors with 41 saves for the San Diego Padres in 2019. He didn’t pitch this past season for the Toronto Blue Jays because of undergoing his second Tommy John surgery of his career on March 24.

Yates will make $1 million next season, and his salary bumps to $6 million in 2023. The deal also includes a $5.75 million club option for 2024 that comes with a $1.25 million buyout.

The 34-year-old Yates was an All-Star and finished ninth in the NL Cy Young voting in 2019, when he posted a 1.19 ERA with 101 strikeouts in 60 games.

He pitched only six games during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, posting a 12.46 ERA before being shelved with an ailing arm. He signed with the Blue Jays but never pitched for Toronto because of the elbow procedure.

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