Indians Release Austin Kearns

The Indians have released outfielder Austin Kearns, according to a club press release.

The Tribe designated Kearns for assignment last week to make room on the active roster for Shin-Soo Choo, who was activated from the disabled list. Now, after clearing waivers, the 31-year-old is a free agent.

Kearns re-signed with Cleveland on a one-year, $1.3MM contract in December. He began the 2010 campaign with the Indians but was traded to the Yankees prior to the non-waiver trade deadline.

The former first-round pick (No. 7 overall in 1998) was once a highy touted prospect in the Reds organization, but has played mostly like a fourth outfielder or platoon type throughout his career. He has hit .254/.350/.417 in 10 big league seasons with the Reds, Nationals, Indians and Yankees.

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