The Boston Red Sox have officially released 42-year old starting pitcher John Smoltz, making him free to sign with any other club.
The Red Sox, who have dropped six of their past 10 games, had until Monday to trade, release or send Smoltz to the minors. General manager Theo Epstein had flown to New York on Aug. 7 to tell Smoltz he was being designated for assignment.
The right-hander signed with the Red Sox last January after two decades with Atlanta, hoping he could recover from shoulder surgery. But he struggled. After eight starts with the Red Sox, Smoltz was 2-5 with an 8.32 ERA.
Smoltz was one of the best pressure pitchers of his time, going 15-4 with four saves and a 2.65 ERA in the postseason. That record had prompted Boston to sign him to a $5.5 million, one-year contract.
Oddsmakers from online sports book SPORTSBETTING.com currently list the Red Sox’s World Series odds at 5/1 and their American League Pennant odds at 3/1.
Posted: 8/17/09 6:00PM ET