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Mariners release left-hander Albers

December 18, 2017

SEATTLE -- Andrew Albers, a 32-year-old left-hander who provided a welcome late-season boost to the Mariners' injury-plagued pitching staff in 2017, has been released by the club in order to pursue an opportunity to pitch for Orix in Japan next season.The move creates an opening on the Mariners' 40-man roster,

SEATTLE -- Andrew Albers, a 32-year-old left-hander who provided a welcome late-season boost to the Mariners' injury-plagued pitching staff in 2017, has been released by the club in order to pursue an opportunity to pitch for Orix in Japan next season.
The move creates an opening on the Mariners' 40-man roster, which now is at 38. That number will increase to 39 as soon as the Mariners make official the impending signing of free-agent reliever Juan Nicasio, who is awaiting a physical.
Alberts sent out a Tweet on Monday announcing his departure:

Albers went 5-1 with a 3.51 ERA in nine games, including six starts, after being purchased from the Braves in August. At the time, the Mariners were trying to stay in the American League Wild Card race despite their top four starters sitting on the disabled list.
Albers is 7-6 with a 4.10 ERA in 26 Major League games, including 18 starts, after spending time with the Twins in 2013 and '16, and one game with the Blue Jays in '15. He also pitched in Korea in '14, and he has competed for three different independent league teams in the U.S. since beginning his pro career in 2008.
With seven other returning starters having Major League experience who appeared ahead of him on the depth chart, Albers figured to be headed to Triple-A Tacoma to start the 2018 season, but he instead will take his chances in the Nippon Professional Baseball League.

Greg Johns has covered the Mariners since 1997, and for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @GregJohnsMLB.