The Red Sox have released hard-throwing righty Brian Ellington from his minor league contract, per an announcement from the team’s Triple-A affiliate in Pawtucket.
The 28-year-old Ellington spent parts of the 2015-17 seasons with the Marlins — during which time Aroldis Chapman was the only pitcher in baseball whose average fastball topped Ellington’s 97.9 mph. In 102 2/3 innings at the big league level, Ellington has a 4.65 ERA with 8.6 K/9, 5.6 BB/9, 0.88 HR/9 and a 34.4 percent ground-ball rate.
Ellington hasn’t appeared in the big leagues since the 2017 campaign. While he inked a minor league pact with the Diamondbacks in 2018, a biceps injury limited him to just 11 1/3 innings. This year, he’s notched a 3.32 ERA with 25 strikeouts in 19 innings between Boston’s Double-A and Triple-A affiliates, but he’s also issued 20 walks and hit five batters.
At his best, Ellington paired his premium velocity with a swinging-strike rate near 13 percent and an opponents’ chase rate near 33 percent. Control troubles have been a longstanding issue and have clearly hindered him this year, but Ellington does boast a career 13.6 K/9 mark in Triple-A. His next stop figures to be on another minor league pact.