Former UK right-handed pitcher and Ashland native Brandon Webb has signed a one-year contract with the Texas Rangers pending a physical, Jason Stark of ESPN.com reports. Webb hasn’t pitched since Opening Day 2009 after repeated shoulder problems. Webb has spent each of his first seven MLB seasons with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
In seven seasons Webb is 87-62 with a 3.27 ERA and 1065 strikeouts in 1319.2 innings pitched. Webb won the 2008 Cy Young award and finished second in the voting for the award two other times. Before his shoulder injury Webb had pitched at least 200 innings in five consecutive seasons. The Chicago Cubs, Washington Nationals and an unidentified mystery team in the National League Central were also interested in Webb. Reports early Tuesday pointed to Webb’s hometown Cincinnati Reds as the possible mystery team. (Read more)
UPDATE 12/28: Webb has requested to wear No. 33 in Texas to honor his former UK teammate Jon Hooker, who died in the flight 5191 crash in Lexington in August 2006. Hooker, who was Webb’s roommate at UK and was traveling on the flight to his honeymoon in California, died in the crash along with the 46 other passengers and three crew members. Hooker and his wife, Scarlett, were married the day before the crash. (Read more)