The soon to be 32-year-old has not pitched in the big leagues since 2011 with the Cincinnati Reds and pitched for the Atlantic League's Long Island Ducks last year before closing out the season in Triple-A for the Los Angeles Angels.
The lefty rose to prominence during the 2003 season with the Florida Marlins and made his MLB debut on May 9 of that year at the age of 21. His stellar pitching, throwing motion and personality attracted fans and media. He produced a 14-6 record with a 3.30 ERA in 27 starts and was selected to the All-Star game. Willis helped turn the Marlins season around as they won the World Series and capped off his incredible season by winning the National League Rookie of the Year.
Two years later in 2005, Willis showcased his best season as he recorded a 22-10 record with a 2.63 ERA in 34 starts. He once again was chosen an All-Star and finished runner-up to the NL CY Young award.
Willis could not find consistency after his magical year of 2005, struggling with the Marlins the next two years and was traded to the Detroit Tigers during the 2007 offseason. His decline continued with the Tigers in the three years he spent there and moved on to the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2010.
Willis has a career 72-69 record with a 4.17 ERA in 202 games started during his nine seasons in the big leagues. Signing Willis is a no-risk for the Giants and hopefully he can turnaround his career in the Bay Area.
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