Two former relief aces have earned new chances with the Red Sox. Now, all they have to do is prove they belong.
The Sox on Tuesday agreed to Minor League contracts with both Dan Kolb and Dan Miceli, according to the Associated Press. Right now, the deals are worth $78,000 and $84,000, respectively -- but should either reliever make it to Boston, his contract's value would jump up to $650,000 plus performance incentives.
Kolb, 32, etched his mark in the back end of Milwaukee's bullpen in 2003, saving 21 games that year and 39 games as an All-Star the next season -- all with a combined 2.55 ERA. But a trade to the Braves prior to the 2005 season coincided with the end of his effectiveness, and he was relegated to setup duty by midseason.
He bounced back to Milwaukee the following year and then to Pittsburgh last season, where he spent most of the year in the Minor Leagues.
Miceli, 37, has pitched for 10 teams over 14 seasons, most recently with the Devil Rays back in 2006. But his best season came a full decade ago, when he won 10 games and posted a 3.22 ERA in 67 appearances for the NL Champion Padres in 1998.
Both pitchers will need to rediscover that old effectiveness if they have plans on cracking a Red Sox bullpen that finished second in the Majors last season with a 3.10 ERA.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.