Correia joins Paul Maholm, Ross Ohlendorf and James McDonald as projected members of the Pirates' 2011 rotation. The club has a number of other internal candidates who will compete for the job as the team's fifth starter. Charlie Morton, Brad Lincoln and Scott Olsen are among those candidates.
Correia went 10-10 with a 5.40 ERA in 28 games (26 starts) for the Padres last season, one year after posting a 3.91 ERA and logging a career-best 198 innings. That 2009 season was the only one of Correia's eight years in which he pitched more than 145 innings. He struck out 142 and walked 64 while finishing with a 12-11 record.
There could be at least a partial explanation for Correia's step back in 2010. The righty pitched through much of the season while coping with the death of his younger brother, Trevor, who was killed in a hiking accident in early May. Other than a short stint on the bereavement list, Correia didn't take any additional time off to deal with the loss.
The right-hander began his career pitching primarily as a reliever for the Giants, who drafted Correia in the fourth round of the 2002 First-Year Player Draft. He spent six years with San Francisco. The right-hander earned $3.6 million in 2010.
Correia turned down the Padres' arbitration offer, preferring to seek out what was available on the open market. As a Type B free agent, the Padres will receive a supplemental first-round pick in next year's Draft. The Pirates do not lose any of their picks in the acquisition.
Correia's two-year deal is reportedly worth a guaranteed $8 million, which makes him the Pirates' most expensive offseason acquisition to this point. Lyle Overbay signed for $5 million, while Matt Diaz's two-year deal will earn him $4.25 million.
In his career, Correia has gone 36-43 with a 4.57 ERA in 231 appearances (105 starts). He has recorded 546 strikeouts and walked 296 in 741 innings.