Jeff Karstens Returning to Pittsburgh

Despite an apparent fallout with Jeff Karstens and non-tendering him in November, the Pirates are bringing back the 30 year old righty, according to Bill Brink:

The deal is said to be worth $2.5 million. It’s a surprising move, but good to have Karstens back at a cheaper rate. He made $3.1 million last season. It is a little bit of a shock that he didn’t get a better deal on the free agent market; here’s what Dejan Kovacevic had to say on November 30th:

“…this won’t be one of those where the pitcher agrees to come back at a lower rate. He’s out of here.”

There are plenty of questions about Karstens’ health, but he offered this on December 15th:

Karstens is projected by Bill James to post a 3.86 ERA in 105 innings in 2013. The Pirates definitely need rotation help (we wrote about this earlier) and Karstens will compete for a spot.

UPDATE – January 17th

Karstens is officially back and sounds excited:

To make room for Karstens on the 40-man roster, Zach Stewart has been designated for assignment

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