Veteran catcher Mike Zunino is returning to the Tampa Bay Rays on a one-year deal, it was announced Wednesday.
Zunino will make $2 million in salary for 2021 and receive a $1 million buyout if the Rays decline their option for 2022. The 2022 club option is worth up to $7 million based on playing time.
The 29-year-old Zunino slashed just .147/.238/.360 with four home runs and 28 RBIs in 28 games last season, his second with the Rays, but he is known more for his defense.
He did, however, hit .278 with two homers and four RBIs in the Rays' American League Championship Series victory over the Houston Astros. He became the first player in major league history to hit under .150 in the regular season and then hit multiple homers in the postseason, according to Stats LLC.
Tampa Bay declined Zunino's $4.5 million option for 2021 following the Rays' World Series loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers in six games.
The Rays also agreed to minor league contracts with right-handers David Hess and Andrew Kittredge and catcher Joe Odom. All three received invites to major league spring training.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.