Phillies, reliever David Robertson agree to two-year, $23 million deal

The Philadelphia Phillies have agreed to a deal with right-handed relief pitcher David Robertson, the team announced Thursday. It will be a two-year deal that guarantees him at least $23 million, reports Mark Feinsand of MLB.com.

The contract contains a club option for a third season, and Robertson has reportedly already passed his physical. Robertson, who will turn 34 on April 9, is coming off a 2018 season that saw him finish with a 3.23 ERA and an 8-3 record with the Yankees. Robertson was one of the best free agent relief pitchers available this offseason, and CBS Sports ranked him No. 22 on our Free Agent Tracker.

"Philly really checked off all the boxes for me," Robertson said to MLB.com. "They are hungry to get back to the postseason and win. They have a great fan base, a beautiful ballpark and a special focus on charity. They've put together a great squad and I think I can bring a lot to the team in the back end of their bullpen."

Robertson debuted for the Yankees in 2008 and spent eight-and-a-half of his 11 big league seasons in the Bronx. He has appeared in at least 60 games in every season since 2009 and owns a career K/9 rate of 12.0.

The Phillies have been making moves this offseason to address the bullpen, one of their biggest weaknesses. In December, the Phillies added veteran relievers Juan Nicasio and Jose Alvarez via trades with the Seattle Mariners and Los Angeles Angels, respectively. 

Robertson will bolster the back of the bullpen, and he could be the closer for Philadelphia or he could set up for Seranthony Dominguez. Last season, Phillies manager Gabe Kapler used a different approach for his bullpen in which there were not defined roles. Kapler's strategy may or may not stay the same in 2019, but the addition of one of the most consistent relievers in the game is a great move.

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