After attempting numerous comebacks over the past half decade, former Red Sox setup man Daniel Bard has opted to officially retire, he tells SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo. Bard chronicles the ups and downs of a once-promising career that was derailed by his inexplicable development of the yips and an an inability to throw strikes at any level. Bard reminds that he overcame a similar issue early in his career after being drafted, but injuries and recurring difficulties in locating the strike zone ultimately led him to retire after signing five unsuccessful minor league deals since his last big league appearance.
Here are some of the day’s other minor moves from around the league…
- The Indians announced on Thursday that they’ve signed left-hander Robert Zarate to a minor league deal and invited him to Major League Spring Training. Zarate, 31 next month, didn’t pitch in 2016 or 2017 due to a spring elbow injury in ’16 that ultimately required Tommy John surgery. Zarate has had a unique career, spending more time pitching in the Venezuelan Winter League than he has with MLB affiliates in his big league career. His 2015 campaign produced a 2.90 ERA with a 49-to-15 K/BB ratio and a 52.1 percent ground-ball rate in 40 1/3 with the Rays’ Triple-A affiliate, however. Zarate has never reached the big league level in his career.
- The Rangers announced minor league deals for right-hander Steve Delabar and outfielder Destin Hood (via Twitter). Both players will be invited to Spring Training, per the announcement. Delabar didn’t pitch in 2017 after being popped for an 80-game suspension following a failed PED test. Delabar, 34, was an All-Star with the Blue Jays back in 2013 and served as a very effective member of Toronto’s relief corps from 2012-13 before declining in 2014-15. He has a career 4.07 ERA and has averaged better than 11 strikeouts per nine innings in 194 2/3 MLB frames. Hood, meanwhile, long rated as one of the Nationals’ more promising farmhands, but the former second-rounder’s career stalled in Triple-A. He spent the 2016-17 seasons in the Marlins organization and posted solid, albeit unspectacular numbers in Triple-A.