(Photo by David Welker/Getty Images)

Erik Bedard


The Houston Astros signed left-handed pitcher Erik Bedard to a Minor League contract, with an invitation to spring training, on Monday.

The 33-year old, who has pitched at least parts of nine seasons in the Major Leagues, has accumulated a 63-64 overall record, with a 3.85 ERA.

Bedard was the opening day starter for the Pittsburgh Pirates a season ago, but was released in August, after going 7-14, with a 5.01 ERA.

Bedard came up through the Baltimore Orioles' organization, and had his two best seasons there, from 2006-2007, going 28-15, with a combined ERA. of under 3.50.

On February 8, 2008, Bédard was traded to the Seattle Mariners in a 5-for-1 deal sending outfielder Adam Jones and pitchers George Sherrill, Tony Butler, Chris Tillman and Kam Mickolio to the Orioles.

Bedard's stint in Seattle was marred by injuries, including a torn labrum, which caused him to miss part of 2009, and all of 2010.

Since returning from that injury, Bedard, who has been an opening day starter for the Orioles and Mariners, as well as the Pirates, is only 12-23, with an ERA. of 4.30.

Right-handers Bud Norris, Lucas Harrell, and Jordan Lyles are expected to occupy three of the five spots in the Astros starting rotation, with Bedard battling the likes of Philip Humber, Alex White, Dallas Keuchel, John Ely, Jarred Cosart, and Edgar Gonzalez for the other two spots.