ATLANTA (Reuters) - The Atlanta Braves signed veteran closer Billy Wagner to a one-year, $7 million deal on Wednesday, counting on one of baseball's top relievers returning to his best form.
The agreement includes a $6.5 million option for the 2011 season, the team said on their website (http://atlanta.braves.mlb.com).
Wagner, 38, sixth on Major League Baseball's all-time save list with 385, missed most of last season due to elbow surgery.
The left-hander returned for the final two months of the campaign, making 17 combined appearances with the New York Mets and Boston Red Sox and posting a 1-1 record with 26 strikeouts.
Wagner established himself as one of the game's leading closers in 1999 when he recorded a career-best 1.57 ERA and converted 39 of 42 save opportunities for the Houston Astros.
During a 12-season span beginning in 1997, Wagner registered a 2.40 ERA and converted 376 of his 434 save opportunities.
(Writing by Steve Keating in Calgary, editing by Tony Jimenez)