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UPDATE: Phillies sign Joaquin Benoit; Mariot DFA’d

Photo by Keith Allison (https://www.flickr.com/photos/keithallison/29221986002/)

Photo by Keith Allison (https://www.flickr.com/photos/keithallison/29221986002/)

UPDATE (12:04 p.m. Dec. 6): And it’s official. To make room on the 40-man roster, the Phillies designated reliever Michael Mariot for assignment. Mariot, 28, flashed some good stuff late in 2016 but finished the year with a 5.82 ERA, 23 strikeouts and 14 walks over 25 appearances.

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UPDATE (3:06 p.m.): The deal is for one year and worth $7.5 million, according to the Associated Press.

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UPDATE: Jon Heyman reports a deal is done. No details yet.

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The Phillies are close to signing relief pitcher Joaquin Benoit, according to Jim Salisbury.

Benoit, who will be 40 in July, had a poor start to 2016 with Seattle (24.1 IP, 5.18 ERA, 28 K, 15 BB) but turned it around completely with Texas (23.2 IP, 0.38 ERA, 24 K, 9 BB). The righty is probably somewhere in between, averaging a 2.15 ERA with 63 K and 21 BB over the last four seasons.

The Phils believe the agreement will be finalized before the Winter Meetings end Thursday. If so, the Phils will have added another piece to a bullpen that needed considerable help this offseason. Currently Hector Neris and Pat Neshek are good bets to make the ‘pen out of Clearwater, while Jeanmar Gomez, Edubray Ramos, Joely Rodriguez and David Rollins will compete for spots. Benoit would be more like a sure thing.

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