The Phillies have released veteran righty Ernesto Frieri, as Triple-A director of media relations & broadcasting Matt Provence noted on Twitter. Frieri had seemed set to open the season with Lehigh Valley, but will instead head back to the open market.
It’s been some time since Frieri was an effective major league reliever, and he wasn’t able to show enough this spring to stick with the Philadelphia organization. Once a high-strikeout, late-inning option, Frieri’s velocity and swinging strike rates plummeted last year with the Rays. Though he did retire eight batters by way of strikeout this spring, he also allowed nine earned runs and five long balls in his seven innings of action.