Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Burnett declines own contract option

Philadelphia,  PA -- A.J. Burnett may pitch a 16th season, but it likely won't be for the Philadelphia Phillies.

Burnett declined his player option for the 2015 season on Monday and is set to become a free agent.

"It was good for our organization to have this flexibility," Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said on Tuesday. "It allows us to make a different set of choices as to how we want to move forward. Ultimately, both parties hoped things would have worked out a little better here, but they didn't."

The 37-year-old right-hander struggled in his only year with the Phillies, as he  pitched  to a 4.59 earned run average and  1.41 WHIP while  leading the majors in losses (18), earned runs allowed (109) and walks (96).

The  results were a far cry from his 2012-13 campaigns in Pittsburgh, where he won 26 games and threw to a 3.41 ERA.

Burnett  had posted  at least 10 wins  in nine straight years coming into 2014 and  owns a career  record of 155-150 with a 4.04 ERA for the Florida Marlins, Toronto Blue Jays, New York Yankees, Pirates and Phillies.

Amaro is left with a rotation which is currently comprised of Cole Hamels, Cliff Lee, David Buchanan and Jerome Williams. MLB.com's Todd Zolecki reported the club is not likely to attract the interest of a veteran hurler who is looking to sign a long-term deal.
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