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Red Sox sign pitcher Alexi Ogando to 1-year deal

Alexi Ogando is 28-16 with a 3.35 ERA in 183 big-league games, including 48 starts.
Alexi Ogando is 28-16 with a 3.35 ERA in 183 big-league games, including 48 starts. Bob Levy/Getty

The Red Sox on Friday signed righthander Alexi Ogando to a one-year deal worth $1.5 million, with incentives that could double the value of the contract. To make room on the roster, they designated lefthander Drake Britton for assignment.

Ogando, 31, was a consistently excellent performer for the Rangers from 2010-13, making the All-Star team in 2011, before his 2014 season was derailed by injuries.

He went 2-3 with a 6.84 ERA in 27 relief appearances (25 innings) last year before the Rangers shut him down in early June because of elbow problems.

In the four previous seasons, however, Ogando never posted an ERA above 3.51, going 26-13 with a 3.12 ERA, including a 2.46 ERA as a reliever.

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At his best, he featured a mid-90s fastball with considerable movement along with a swing-and-miss slider. As a starter, he also incorporated a changeup.

After Ogando could not pitch for most of the final four months of the 2014 season — which followed a 2013 season in which he suffered inflammation and nerve irritation in his shoulder — the Rangers decided not to tender the arbitration-eligible pitcher a contract.

Ogando proved impressive enough in workouts this month that, given his stuff and his track record as a late-innings contributor and starter, he secured a major league deal.

Because he has four-plus years of service time, Ogando will be an arbitration-eligible player for 2016.

Britton, 25, pitched in 25 games for the Red Sox over the last two seasons, logging a 2.93 ERA over 27⅔ innings. Last year, he posted a 5.86 ERA at Triple A Pawtucket over 45 appearances.


Alex Speier can be reached at alex.speier@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @alexspeier.