Twins Release Tsuyoshi Nishioka

The Twins announced that they have unconditionally released Tsuyoshi Nishioka at the infielder's request. Nishioka had been under contract for 2013, but he will relieve the Twins of the $3.25MM remaining on his contract. Nishioka thanked his fans and the Twins in a statement released by the team.

"I take full responsibility for my performance which was below my own expectations," Nishioka said. "At this time, I have made the decision that it is time to part ways. I have no regrets and know that only through struggle can a person grow stronger."

Nishioka signed a three-year, $9MM contract with the Twins before the 2011 season. The Twins are no longer responsible for his $3MM salary in 2013 or for the $250K buyout on his 2014 contract option.

Nishioka, 28, appeared in 68 games with the Twins last year but missed considerable time with a broken leg suffered early in the season. He has spent most of the 2012 season at Triple-A, where he posted a .258/.315/.324 batting line in 431 plate appearances.

It's rare for an MLB player to pass up guaranteed money. Royals starter Gil Meche walked away from $12MM before the 2011 season.

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