The Braves have signed veteran reliever Scott Proctor to a one-year contract, according to his agent. The team hopes he can overcome two recent elbow surgeries and regain something akin to his form.
The right-hander missed the entire 2009 season with the Florida Marlins while recovering from ligament-transplant elbow surgery in May, after flexor-tendon surgery in October 2008.
The Braves have not confirmed the signing, as teams are urged by Major League Baseball not to make such announcements during the World Series.
Soon after the World Series, the Braves are also expected to announce pitcher Tim Hudson has signed a three-year contract. He passed his physical this week after a brief delay finding a doctor who was approved by the insurance company.
Proctor, who'll be 32 in January, was released by the Marlins last month and signed a split contract with the Braves, meaning he'll receive less for any portion of the season that he's pitching in the minors.
Agent Mark Rodgers told the TCPalm newspaper of Florida, near Proctor's hometown in Martin County, that the Braves had pursued Proctor "aggressively" since he was released by the Marlins.
Pitchers usually require 12-13 months of recovery from the "Tommy John" surgery that he had, which other Braves pitchers including Tim Hudson and Mike Gonzalez have had in recent years.
Among non-closers, Proctor was once regarded as one of baseball's top relievers as a hard-throwing workhorse the New York Yankees. He paid a price after piling up nearly 190 relief innings in back-to-back 83-appearance seasons with the Yankees and Dodgers in 2007-2008.
He had a 6.05 ERA in 41 appearances for the Dodgers in 2008, and had two elbow surgeries without pitching in a major league game since then. The Marlins hoped he would be recovered from flexor-tendon surgery to pitch last season, but he had repeated setbacks before the decision to have ligament-transplant surgery.
His best season was 2006, when Proctor was 6-4 with a 3.52 ERA and 89 strikeouts in 102-1/3 innings. He held hitters to a .232 average and .292 on-base percentage that season, including .204/.269 by lefties.
He has a 16-10 career record and 4.42 ERA in 262 games, all but one in relief. Proctor has converted only one of his 15 career save opportunities.
Former Braves are likely to dominate the National Baseball Hall of Fame class of 2014 more than any team has in quite a while, and Bobby Cox could get the ball rolling Monday when the Veterans Committee announces its selections.
The Atlanta Braves delivered their pitch to real estate developers Friday, formally opening the search for a partner on a proposed $400 million mixed-use development adjacent to a new Cobb County stadium.