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01/05/09 8:16 PM EST

Dodgers sign Vargas to one-year pact

Right-hander has experience as both starter and reliever

The Dodgers officially announced Monday that they signed right-hander Claudio Vargas to a one-year deal in a move that should add pitching depth to a team that has already lost Brad Penny to free agency and could lose Derek Lowe in the coming weeks.

Vargas, 30, appeared in 11 games with the Mets last season, going 3-2 with a 4.62 ERA. In his six-year career, he has appeared in 114 games as a starter and 50 games as a reliever.

The deal is believed to be worth the Major League minimum salary of $400,000, but it can add an additional $1.4 million with incentives.

"Claudio provides us with Major League experience and versatility," Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti said in a statement. "He's won at the Major League level and he can start or work out of the bullpen if necessary."

Vargas' best season was in 2006 when he went 12-10 with a 4.83 ERA in 30 starts with the Diamondbacks.

He joined the Brewers as part of a six-player trade before the 2007 season and started 23 games for Milwaukee. Vargas went 11-6 with a 5.09 ERA that season but the Brewers were 16-7 when he started.

Vargas, however, was released by the Brewers in March and joined the Mets before last season. He started four games for New York, going 2-2 with a 4.50 ERA.

Hot Stove

Vargas played in his native Dominican Republic this offseason in the the Dominican Winter League for Aguilas del Cibao and posted a 3-1 record with a 4.02 ERA and 31 strikeouts in six starts.

Rhett Bollinger is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.