The Texas Rangers have released righthander Daniel Bard, the one-time standout set-up man for the Red Sox whose career may be over at 28 due to an inability to throw strikes.
Bard pitched in four games for Single A Hickory this season, facing 18 batters. He walked nine, hit seven and had one strikeout. Bard was charged with 13 runs, and was released on Thursday according to the Dallas Morning News.
Bard pitched in 192 games for the Red Sox from 2009 to 2011, posting a 2.88 ERA and 1.06 WHIP. He struck out 213 over 197 innings.
But his career took a dramatic turn for the worse after the 2011 season.
Bard lobbied the team to become a starter that fall and was allowed to make the transition. He did not pitch particularly well in spring training in 2012, but started the season in the rotation and was 5-5 with a 4.56 ERA in his first 10 games.
On June 3, 2012 in Toronto, Bard could not get out of the second inning. He walked six and hit two batters before being taken out of the game and then optioned to the minors a few days later.
The Red Sox tried Bard as a reliever late in that season and he allowed nine earned runs over 4 1/3 innings and walked six.
In 2013, Bard appeared in 16 minor league games for the Red Sox and pitched 15 1/3 innings. He allowed 11 earned runs on 14 hits with 27 walks, and 11 wild pitches. Bard also pitched two games in the majors with poor results.
The Cubs claimed Bard off waivers last September, but did not use him in any games. He signed with the Rangers in February after having thoracic outlet surgery to improve nerve function in his arm. Bard was hopeful the surgery would provide an answer to his problems, but the results this season were more of the same.
Since the start of the 2012 season, in 70 major league and minor league games, Bard has a 7.56 ERA with 110 walks, 25 hit batters, and 21 wild pitches over 108 1/3 innings.