Milwaukee believed they signed Alfredo Figaro to a minor-league deal back in December, but a flaw in his contract with the Orix Buffaloes stated that he was still a reserve for the Japanese team. However, it appears it has all been taken care of as the Buffaloes made him a free agent and the Brewers were able to go through with the signing process.
The 28-year-old Dominican Republic native was drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the 2006 MLB Draft and made his Major League debut on June 20, 2009. He appeared in five games that season, three of which were starts, in which he went 2-2 with a 6.35 ERA and 16 strikeouts in 17 innings. Figaro is supposed to be an aggressive pitcher who should be able to start games at the professional level. However, that is not what happened with the Tigers when he was called up.
“He pitched very tentative until the horse was out of the barn,” Detroit manager Jim Leyland said after Figaro’s second start in 2009 in which he surrendered seven earned runs on 10 hits to the Houston Astros. “The one thing I thought he would be was aggressive. He pitched like he was caught up in the names on the back.”
The Tigers eventually cut their losses and sold his contract to the Buffaloes. Last season Figaro went 0-5 with a 3.09 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 11 games while he has posted a 3.25 ERA in two years in the Nippon Japan Pacific League. While playing in the Dominican Winter League this winter, the right-hander had a 2.63 ERA in six appearances, three of which were starts.
Milwaukee has their starting rotation secured and they have a good idea of what their bullpen is going to look like for the 2013 season, but Figaro could show something in camp that might make the Brewers reconsider who will be named to the 25-man roster.