The Red Sox have released catcher A.J. Pierzynski, the team announced Wednesday.
Boston has struggled offensively in 2014, and it shows with a record of 43-52. Last Wednesday, the team decided to move in a different direction at the catcher position and designated Pierzynski for assignment. Pierzynski was not claimed, and became an unrestricted free agent today.
In 2013, Pierzynski experienced a renaissance as a member of the Texas Rangers when he batted .272/.297/.425 with 17 home runs in 134 games. But Pierzynski was unable to replicate that during the 2014 campaign, and his .348 slugging percentage was not enough to justify his $7.5 million salary and starting position.
The Red Sox called up 23-year-old catching prospect Christian Vazquez from Triple-A Pawtucket to take Pierzynski's place on the roster. Vazquez batted .279 at Pawtucket this year and has gone 5-for-11 in three games since being called up.
- Brad Rowland and Evan Webeck