HOUSTON (AP) -The Houston Astros signed Chan Ho Park to a minor league contract on Tuesday, hoping the 13-year veteran can boost their mediocre pitching staff.
The 34-year-old was released by the New York Mets on Sunday. The South Korean right-hander allowed seven runs and six hits over four innings in his only start for the Mets this year, against Florida on May 3.
Park was 4-4 with a 5.57 ERA in nine starts for Triple-A New Orleans. Garner said Park will ``have a few starts'' at Triple-A Round Rock before the team decides whether to call him up.
``You're taking a chance on him, to see what he can do and where he stands,'' Garner said.
The Astros lost four of their previous six and their pitching staff had the ninth-ranked ERA in the NL heading before Tuesday's game against Oakland.
Park, the first South Korean to reach the majors, had his best season in 2000, with the Los Angeles Dodgers, winning 18 games with a 3.27 ERA.
``You never have enough pitching,'' Garner said. ``This guy, he's had a history. If he turns out to be OK, maybe there's a possibility for us.''
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