Two-time AL Cy Young Award winner Johan Santana agreed Tuesday to a minor league contract with the Baltimore Orioles as he tries to come back from the second major operation on his left shoulder.
Santana would get a $3 million US, one-year deal if added to the 40-man roster and would have the chance to earn an additional $5.05 million in roster and performance bonuses. He would receive the full amount for 120 days and 25 starts.
The 34-year-old left-hander became a free agent after completing a $137.5 million, six-year contract with the New York Mets, who declined a $25 million option and paid a $5.5 million buyout.
Santana, 139-78 with a 3.20 ERA in 12 seasons with Minnesota and the Mets, missed the 2011 season following shoulder surgery on Sept. 14, 2010, returned to pitch the Mets' first no-hitter on June 1, 2012, then missed last season after an operation on April 2.
The deal announced Tuesday follows Baltimore's recent agreements with right-handers Ubaldo Jimenez and Suk-min Yoon, and outfielder Nelson Cruz.
"I think it's great," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said before Tuesday night's game against the New York Yankees. "I'm not going to say no risk, as far as, I'm not the owner, but it's another thing that Peter (Angelos) allowed us to do that puts us in position to get kind of lucky. I'm not going to say it's a no lose proposition. There are things you lose, but it makes a risk worth taking. I think it's exciting, the possibility down the road."
Santana is expected to report Wednesday. The Orioles are hopeful that he might be ready to pitch in the majors around June 1.
Santana can earn $2.1 million in bonuses based on days on the active 25-man roster: $250,000 for 30, $350,000 for 60, $500,000 for 90 and $1 million for 120.
He can make $2.95 million based on starts: $250,000 for five, $350,000 for 10, $500,000 for 15, $750,000 for 20, $150,000 each for 21 and 22, $200,000 apiece for 23 and 24, and $400,000 for 25.
He has additional award bonuses for All-Star selection, and winning a Gold Glove and the Comeback Player of the Year and league championship series and World Series MVP awards.
Santana would get $100,000 if he is released before March 25. He would be able to opt out of the deal if he isn't added to the major league roster by May 30.