Orioles agree to terms with Milone on minor league deal

SARASOTA, Fla. - The Orioles found a veteran pitcher to compete for a spot in their rotation and it didn’t cost them a major league contract.

Left-hander Tommy Milone has agreed to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training, according to an industry source.

Milone, who turns 33 later this month, has pitched for six teams since debuting with the Nationals in 2011.

Primarily a starter for the first five years, Milone has transitioned into more of a relief/bulk guy role. Only six of his 23 appearances with the Mariners last season came as a member of the rotation.

The Orioles will work out Milone as a starter in camp, allowing him to join a competition that is wide open behind John Means and Alex Cobb.

Milone-Throws-Mariners-Sidebar.jpgMilone is 50-47 with a 4.47 ERA and 1.316 WHIP in 174 games, including 136 starts. He’s averaged 2.2 walks, 6.7 strikeouts and 1.5 home runs allowed per nine innings.

The Magnus Sports client also has pitched for the Athletics, Twins, Mets and Brewers. He rejoined the Nationals in 2018 but appeared in only five games.

Milone’s best stretch came with the Athletics from 2012-14, when he was 31-22 with a 3.84 ERA and 1.263 WHIP in 75 games (73 starts). The Brewers signed him to a one-year, $1.25 million contract prior to the 2017 season and released him in May.

He’s settled for minor league deals with his last three teams.

The Nationals selected Milone in the 10th round of the 2008 First-Year Player Draft before trading him to the Twins with four other players in December 2011 for left-hander Gio Gonzalez and minor league pitcher Robert Gilliam. Milone homered on the first pitch thrown to him in the majors.

The camp roster will swell to 68 players, including 36 pitchers, upon Milone’s arrival this week.

Milone joins Wade LeBlanc, his teammate in Seattle last season. Both are left-handers with four-seam fastballs that top out in the upper 80s.

Asher Wojciechowski is expected to be included in the rotation, but Milone and LeBlanc are tossed into a mix that also includes David Hess, Rule 5 picks Brandon Bailey and Michael Rucker, Kohl Stewart, Brady Rodgers, Keegan Akin, Chandler Shepherd, Tom Eshelman and Ty Blach.

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