The Phillies officially announced on Tuesday the signing of right-handed reliever Joaquin Benoit. The one-year deal is believed to be worth $7.5 million, though the club hasn't confirmed the financial details.
Benoit went 3-1 with one save and a 2.81 ERA in a combined 51 appearances last year between the Seattle Mariners and Toronto Blue Jays. To make room on the 40-man roster the Phillies designated right-hander Michael Mariot for assignment.
Benoit provides added depth to the back-end of a bullpen, an area the Phillies have aggressively addressed this off-season by already acquiring Pat Neshek via trade and adding David Rollins via waivers. The addition of Benoit also means general manager Matt Klentak may have some trade chips in Hector Neris or Jeanmar Gomez if the right offer came along.
Whatever happens, the three bullpen additions are low-risk, high-reward. Benoit and Neshek are both set to be free agents at the end of 2017 and both may command interest at the trade deadline if the Phillies find themselves out of contention. If dealt, they would likely net the Phillies a prospect or two for the rebuild process.