The Minnesota Twins announced today that they have signed right-handed pitcher Rich Harden to a minor league contract with an invitation to major league Spring Training.

Harden, 31, missed all of 2012 with a right shoulder strain and underwent shoulder surgery to repair his right rotator cuff on January 31, 2012. He went 4-4 with a 5.12 ERA (82.2 IP, 47 ER), 91 strikeouts and 31 walks in 15 starts for the Oakland Athletics in 2011.

The 6-foot-1, 195-pound right-hander ranks third in the majors since 2003 with a 9.20 strikeouts-per-nine innings pitched ratio (min. 900 innings) behind Tim Lincecum (9.76) and Clayton Kershaw (9.26). Harden was originally selected by the Athletics in the 17th round of the 2000 First-Year Player Draft out of Central Arizona College.

The Victoria, British Columbia native has a career record of 59-38 with a 3.76 ERA (928.1 IP, 388 ER), 949 strikeouts, 422 walks and two complete games in 170 appearances (160 starts) over part of nine seasons with the Athletics (2003-08, 2011), Chicago Cubs (2008-09) and Texas Rangers (2010).

In addition to Harden, the Twins have invited the following players to major league camp: right-handed pitchers Bryan Augenstein, Nick Blackburn, Deolis Guerra, Alex Meyer, Lester Oliveros and Anthony Slama; outfielders Brandon Boggs and Clete Thomas; infielders Jeff Clement, Chris Colabello, Ray Olmedo and Mark Sobolewski; and catchers Kyle Knudson, Danny Lehmann and Dan Rohlfing.