ST. PETERSBURG -- The Rays filled a bullpen need Tuesday when they finalized a deal with left-handed specialist Brian Shouse.
Shouse had his physical Thursday, which normally is a formality, but the official announcement of him joining the Rays lingered until Tuesday.
"We're excited to add Brian to the organization," said Rays executive vice president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman. "[We] just had some difficulties in getting back some of the results. But we were very confident that it wasn't an issue, and it proved not to be."
The one-year deal gives the Rays an option for 2010.
Shouse, 40, went 5-1 with a 2.81 ERA in 69 games last season for the Brewers and was particularly effective against lefties, whom he held to a .180 average.
"He brings a lot to our bullpen," Friedman said. "He's had a tremendous amount of success the last few seasons -- especially against left-handers. He generates a lot of ground balls. He doesn't walk guys. He keeps the ball in the park. And we feel like he is going to help diversify our bullpen even more and strengthen it beyond where we were earlier this offseason."
Room must be made on the Rays' 40-man roster to accommodate Shouse's addition. Friedman said the corresponding move would likely be announced Wednesday.
Trever Miller filled the left-handed specialist role for the Rays in 2008, but he signed with the Cardinals during the offseason.
Shouse turned down arbitration with Milwaukee after making $2 million in 2008. He was a Type B free agent, and the Brewers will get an additional "sandwich" pick in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, but the Rays will not have to surrender a Draft pick; in past years, this would not have been the case.
Shouse made his Major League debut in 1993 with the Pirates and has pitched in parts of nine seasons at the Major League level for the Red Sox, Royals and Rangers, compiling a 12-9 mark with a 3.65 ERA in 422 career appearances. Shouse also spent an ample amount of time at the Minor League level, where he made 478 appearances over 14 seasons.
Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.