Angels Release Hiroyuki Kobayashi

The Angels released right-hander Hiroyuki Kobayashi, Bill Shaikin of the LA Times reports (on Twitter). The team had signed Kobayashi to a minor league deal with an invitation to Spring Training last month.

The 34-year-old didn't pitch for an MLB or NPB team in 2012, but he posted a 3.00 ERA with 10.4 K/9 and 4.4 BB/9 in 39 innings of relief for the Hanshin Tigers in 2011. He first moved to the bullpen in 2010, saving 29 games for the Chiba Lotte Marines. The Pirates and Diamondbacks were linked to Kobayashi following the 2010 season.

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