HOUSTON, TX - The Houston Astros have agreed to terms on a one-year contract with free agent right-handed pitcher Matt Albers, General Manager Jeff Luhnow announced today. The deal includes a club option for the 2015 season.
Albers, 30, has been one of the most effective relievers in the Majors over the past two seasons, going 6-2 in 119 appearances in that span with a 2.77 ERA (38ER/123.1IP) and a .229 opponent's batting average. In 2013, he was 3-1 in 56 appearances for Cleveland with a 3.14 ERA (22ER/63IP). His best month for the playoff-bound Indians came during the pennant race as he posted an 0.82 ERA (1ER/11IP) in 11 appearances in September with a .139 opponent's batting average.
Additionally, Albers' ground ball percentage of 81.3% was tops among all AL pitchers in 2013 (min. 50 apps.).
Albers, who was born in Houston and attended both Clements High School and San Jacinto Junior College, began his professional career after being selected by the Astros in the 23rd round of the 2001 June Draft. He made his ML debut with the Astros in 2006 and remained with the club before being traded to Baltimore after the 2007 season as part of a multi-player deal. Albers has also had stints with the Red Sox and Diamondbacks. He has appeared in 356 games overall in his ML career.
With the addition of Albers, the Astros 40-man roster is now at 39 players.