The Braves announced today they have given righty Freddy Garcia his unconditional release. Earlier this month, Garcia told MLB.com's Mark Bowman he'd retire rather than return to Triple-A. Garcia pitched in five games this spring, allowing nine earned runs in 17 innings. He would have earned $1.5MM had he made the Braves' Opening Day roster.
Garcia, 37, posted a 4.37 ERA, 5.2 K/9, 1.9 BB/9, 2.02 HR/9, and 41.9% groundball rate in 80 1/3 innings for the Orioles and Braves last year. The Braves lost Kris Medlen and Brandon Beachy this year to Tommy John surgery, and have also placed Mike Minor and Gavin Floyd on the DL. Minor and Floyd hope to be activated in April and May, respectively. The Braves seem to be planning to open the season with a four-man rotation of Julio Teheran, Alex Wood, David Hale, and Gus Schlosser, with Ervin Santana joining the mix around the season's second week.