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Reports: Daisuke Matsuzaka signs minor league deal with Indians

02.10.13 at 2:21 pm ET

According to multiple reports (first from Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com), former Red Sox starter Daisuke Matsuzaka agreed to a minor league contract with the Indians. Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reported that the right-hander will earn a base salary of $1.5 million if he makes the big league team, while Heyman reports that Matsuzaka can make as much as $4 million based on various contract incentives.

Matsuzaka, a free-agent this winter for the first time in his career after concluding a six-year, $52 million deal with the Red Sox, struggled in 2012 as he returned from Tommy John surgery in June. He went 1-7 with an 8.28 ERA in 11 starts that spanned just 45 2/3 innings, with his ERA representing the highest ever by a Red Sox starter who made at least 10 starts in a season. Still, at times, he showed an ability to get swings and misses and his control was better than had been at any point since his rookie year of 2007, as he punched out 8.1 batters per nine innings (his best rate since 2009) while walking 3.9 per nine. In six big league seasons, the right-hander went 50-37 with a 4.52 ERA in 117 games.

With the Indians, Matsuzaka will be reunited with his former manager with the Red Sox, Terry Francona.

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