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Orioles agree to sign Ubaldo Jimenez to four-year, $50M deal

By Matt Snyder | Baseball Writer

Ubaldo Jimenez will be heading to Baltimore.
Ubaldo Jimenez will be heading to Baltimore. (USATSI)

Snyder: Orioles' gamble on Jimenez unlikely to pay off

Free agent starting pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez appears to finally have a team. He has agreed to sign with the Orioles, Jon Heyman confirms. Heyman reports that the deal is for four years and $50 million.

The deal has been finalized, other than that pesky physical -- and with the Orioles, you never know if the player will pass.

Jimenez, 30, finished third in NL Cy Young voting in 2010, when he was one of baseball's best pitchers. He had largely disappointed since then, until putting things together down the stretch for the Indians last season.

In Jimenez's last 12 starts, he went 6-4 with a 1.72 ERA and 94 strikeouts in 78 1/3 innings. On the season, he was 13-9 with a 3.30 ERA (114 ERA+), 1.33 WHIP and 194 strikeouts in 182 2/3 innings. His 9.6 strikeouts per nine innings marked the highest K-rate in his career while he improved his peripherals across the board.

Jimenez in Baltimore would join Chris Tillman and Wei-Yin Chen atop the rotation. Bud Norris would be the likely fourth starter with Miguel Gonzalez, Kevin Gausman and newly-signed Suk-min Yoon competing for the fifth spot.

If the Orioles do complete the signing, they'll forfeit the 17th overall pick in the draft, as Jimenez has first-round draft pick compensation tied to him by virtue of declining the one-year, $14.1 million qualifying offer from Cleveland.

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