The Royals have signed 34-year old right-hander Brad Peacock to a minor league deal, according to Steve Adams at MLB Trade Rumors. Peacock is a ten-year MLB veteran with the Nationals, Astros, and Red Sox, but did not end the year on a MLB roster, and is not subject to baseball’s transaction freeze or lockout.
Peacock was a versatile swingman for the Astros for eight seasons, making 81 starts and 97 relief appearances. His best season came in their 2017 championship season when he was a 3.1 rWAR pitcher, posting a 3.00 ERA and 3.07 FIP with 161 strikeouts in 131 innings. The last two years he has battled injuries, undergoing shoulder surgery in the fall of 2020. He began last season in the Indians organization, but was rocked in the minors and was traded to the Red Sox, where he made just two big league appearances.
If he is healthy, Peacock could be a useful arm to sop up innings and keep Mike Matheny from having to overuse younger pitchers. As recently as 2019, he was still pretty effective at missing bats and could be a useful bullpen arm if he has overcome his neck and shoulder issues. MLB veterans on minor league deal have had the option to attend minor league camp while big league camp is on hiatus.