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Rangers sign RHP Kris Benson to Minor League contract02/21/2009 1:40 PM ET
Surprise, Ariz. - The Texas Rangers announced today that the club has signed right-handed pitcher Kris Benson to a minor league contract with an invitation to major league spring training. Benson arrived in camp this morning and is working out with the club today. Benson, 34, spent last season in the Philadelphia organization as he returned from surgery to repair a torn right rotator cuff on March 20, 2007. He also had surgery on his elbow on that date and missed the entire 2007 campaign. He began last year on the minor league disabled list and was activated on June 2, making 2 appearances with Clearwater in the Florida State League before joining Triple-A Lehigh Valley in the International League. Benson allowed 6 earned runs in 6.2 innings over 2 starts with Clearwater, losing both of those outings, and then was 1-4, 5.52 (37 ER/60.1 IP) in 11 games/starts with Lehigh Valley. He was released by Philadelphia on Aug. 30. Benson has gone 68-73 with a 4.34 ERA in 195 games/starts in his major league career with Pittsburgh (1999-2000, 2002-04), New York-NL (2004-05), and Baltimore (2006). His last big league appearance came in a start with Baltimore on Sept. 27, 2006 at Yankee Stadium. He has 8 career complete games and a pair of shutouts, holding major league batters to a .267 average. The first overall selection in the 1996 June draft by Pittsburgh, Benson has had five different 10-win seasons and four seasons of 180-or-more innings. With the addition of Benson, the Rangers now have 58 players on the club's spring training roster: 39 players on the 40-man roster along with 19 non-roster invitees. An updated spring training roster is attached to this release.
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