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Arizona Diamondbacks add MLB saves leader Mark Melancon to bullpen

Arizona Diamondbacks add MLB saves leader Mark Melancon to bullpen
Former Washington Nationals closer Mark Melancon, shown Oct. 9, 2016, led the majors with 39 saves for the San Diego Padres last season. File Photo by Pat Benic/UPI | License Photo

Dec. 1 (UPI) -- The Arizona Diamondbacks signed right-handed reliever Mark Melancon to a two-year contract Wednesday, the team announced.

Terms of the pact weren't disclosed, but MLB Media and the Arizona Republic reported that Melancon's deal will pay him $6 million in each of 2022 and 2023. The agreement also includes a mutual option of $5 million for the 2024 season with a $2 million buyout.

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"He's a proven backend bullpen guy," D-Backs general manager Mike Hazen told reporters Wednesday. "We talked about at the beginning of the off-season wanting to rebuild our bullpen.

"You know, it was a major issue for us last year and we've done some things on the edges and we're going to continue to do some things as we move through the off-season. But getting a guy in this [closer] spot was important for us."

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Melancon, who will turn 37 in March, led MLB last season with 39 saves for the San Diego Padres.

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In the 2021 season, he posted a 4-3 record and 2.33 ERA across 64 2/3 innings for the Padres. It was his first season with the franchise after spending parts of the last two seasons with the Atlanta Braves (2019-20).

Melancon, a four-time All-Star selection, has a 34-30 record with a 2.79 ERA and 244 saves over 13 Major League seasons for the Pittsburgh Pirates, San Francisco Giants, New York Yankees, Houston Astros, Boston Red Sox, Washington Nationals, Braves and Padres.

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