Mariners agree to contract with left-handed relievers Sherrill, Rhodes

Updated: January 15, 2008, 11:32 PM ET
Associated Press

SEATTLE -- Left-handed reliever Arthur Rhodes is back with the Seattle Mariners, agreeing Tuesday to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Rhodes missed last season with an elbow injury and had ligament replacement surgery in May. He made Seattle's 25-man roster out of spring training despite being a non-roster invitee and missing time with soreness in his elbow.

He had surgery on May 2 and was often in the Mariners' clubhouse wearing a large brace on his arm during the season. He became a free agent in the offseason.

The 38-year-old Rhodes was Seattle's main set-up man for four years, going 26-15 during his stint with the Mariners from 2000-03. Rhodes was 8-0 with a 1.72 ERA when the Mariners won 116 games in 2001.

After stops in Oakland, Cleveland and Baltimore, Rhodes went 0-5 with a 5.32 ERA in 55 games for Philadelphia in 2006.

Seattle also agreed to a $980,000, one-year contract with George Sherrill, the primary left-hander in the Mariners' bullpen. He can make about $60,000 more in performance bonuses.

Sherrill led the Mariners with 73 appearances last season, the third-most in franchise history. He has appeared in 145 games over the last two seasons, tied with the Angels' Scot Shields for most in the American League.

Last year was Sherrill's best in his three seasons with Seattle. Sherrill went 2-0 with a 2.36 ERA, allowing just 28 hits and 12 runs in 45 2-3 innings. Opposing hitters batted just .179 off Sherrill and lefties hit only .156. Sherrill is 10-8 with a 3.65 ERA in his career, all with Seattle.

Sherrill was arbitration eligible a year early because he is a "super-two" player, who has more than two years of service.

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press