Marc Topkin of TampaBay.com is reporting that the Rays are close to signing another Roberto Hernandez. Only this time it is the starting pitcher formerly known as Fausto Carmona who pitched with the Indians the last seven seasons.
After a promising 2010 season in which Carmona went 13-14 with a 3.77 ERA (4.11 FIP) and 124 strikeouts in 210.1 innings, he struggled in 2011. That season he posted a 5.25 ERA (4.56 FIP) in 188.2 innings with 109 strikeouts.
Following the 2011 season, Carmona was arrested and charged with identity fraud. It turned out his real name was Roberto Hernandez and he was actually 31 years old, three years older than he claimed. When he returned to the U.S. in July he was suspended by Major League Baseball for three weeks. He made just three starts after his suspension was lifted.
Hernandez would be the first free agent starting pitcher to sign a big league deal with the Rays since Andrew Friedman took over the front office. However, it is unclear at this point what role he would serve with the Rays and the bullpen could be an option.