SEATTLE (AP) -Free-agent pitcher Carlos Silva and the Mariners are close to completing a four-year contract, a move that would add depth to the Mariners' rotation.
A person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press on Wednesday night that the parameters of the deal were in place, and a formal announcement was expected Thursday afternoon. The person requested anonymity because the announcement had not yet been made.
Talks between the Mariners and Silva's representatives intensified recently after Seattle missed out on Japanese pitcher Hiroki Kuroda.
Kuroda agreed last weekend to a $35.3 million, three-year contract with the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The 28-year-old Silva was 13-14 last season with a 4.19 ERA - better than every Mariners starter other than hard-throwing Felix Hernandez. He would join a Seattle rotation that includes Hernandez, Miguel Batista and Jarrod Washburn.
The Mariners, who haven't made the postseason since 2001, are still seeking a No. 1 starter. They are believed to be involved in trade discussions with the Baltimore Orioles for left-hander Erik Bedard, likely for a combination of top prospects that could include prized outfielder Adam Jones.
Silva spent four seasons in Minnesota, and his first season with the Twins was his best, when he went 14-8 with a 4.21 ERA in 33 starts. He was 9-8 with a 3.44 ERA in 2005, but struggled the last two seasons, going a combined 24-29.
Silva does regularly pitch deep into games, something desperately missing from the Mariners' rotation last season as Seattle's talented bullpen wore down late in the year. Silva pitched at least six innings in 24 of his 33 starts in 2007, including a pair of complete games. Seattle had just six complete games as a staff, three from Jeff Weaver.

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