The Rays have released veteran righty David Carpenter, Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports on Twitter. Also cut loose from the organization was fellow right-hander Jeff Walters.
Signed to a minors deal over the winter, the 31-year-old Carpenter was hoping to make it back to the majors for the first time since 2015. He had struggled to gain traction last year, too, while attempting to work back from shoulder issues that derailed his MLB career.
Carpenter worked to a 2.63 ERA with 10.0 K/9 and 2.6 BB/9 over 126 innings over the course of the 2013-14 seasons, making him a high-quality setup option. But he was not the same pitcher in the following campaign, striking out just 5.5 batters per nine in an injury-shortened year.
The righty has actually been pretty good this spring, allowing three earned runs on seven hits over 8 2/3 innings. He recorded six strikeouts and didn’t issue a single walk in that span. Clearly, though, the Rays still didn’t see quite enough reason to expect he’d be able to contribute in the majors this year, so Carpenter will presumably go searching for another opportunity.
As for Walters, 29, it once seemed likely he’d contribute to the Mets pen. But he struggled with consistency and turned in a down year in 2016 at Triple-A, where he worked to a 5.89 ERA with 6.6 K/9 and 3.8 BB/9 over 65 2/3 innings. Walters landed in MLB camp with the Rays, but struggled in his 4 2/3 frames of Grapefruit League action.