The Padres have granted right-hander Casey Janssen his release, as per the club’s official Twitter feed. The Nationals bought out their end of Janssen’s $7MM mutual option for 2016 following the season, and the veteran reliever signed a minor league deal with San Diego last month.
Janssen, 34, posted a 4.95 ERA, 6.1 K/9 and 3.38 K/BB rate over 40 innings out of Washington’s bullpen last season. ERA indicators (4.08 FIP, 4.60 xFIP, 4.19 SIERA) were a bit more favorable as Janssen had a very low 62.5% strand rate, though his 29.4% grounder rate was far below his 45.8% career mark. While Janssen has never been a power pitcher, his average fastball velocity dropped for the fourth consecutive year (down to 88.5 mph in 2015). After averaging 8.7 K/9 with Toronto from 2010-13, Janssen has managed just 5.8 K/9 over the last two seasons.