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Angels release Joe Blanton with $8.5 million left on contract

Mar 26, 2014, 12:45 PM EDT

Joe Blanton AP

Last offseason the Angels signed Joe Blanton to a two-year, $15 million deal. He was horrendous, going 2-14 with a 6.04 ERA while getting dumped from the rotation and now, after a similarly terrible spring training, they’ve decided to simply release the 33-year-old right-hander.

In doing so the Angels eat the $7.5 million Blanton is owed this season, plus another $1 million to buy out his team option for 2015. So, in all, they paid $113,000 per inning to have Blanton for 20 starts and eight relief appearances.

It’s impossible to argue that Blanton hasn’t been a mess, last season and this spring, but he did post a decent 108/34 K/BB ratio in 133 innings for the Angels and … well, 15 months ago they thought he was worth $15 million. He’ll latch on somewhere and probably pitch in the majors at some point this season, but it’ll likely take some decent work at Triple-A first.

  1. deathmonkey41 - Mar 26, 2014 at 12:46 PM

    Randy Wolf and Joe Blanton available on the same day??? Rueben Amaro just had an orgasm!

    • number42is1 - Mar 26, 2014 at 12:48 PM

      I’m sure Kei Iguana can make himself available too….

      • renaado - Mar 26, 2014 at 1:00 PM

        Probably wont happen unless the Orix Buffaloes let’s him go though.

    • renaado - Mar 26, 2014 at 1:02 PM

      Would they eat out his contact too?

      • number42is1 - Mar 26, 2014 at 1:39 PM

        uhhhhhhhh

      • renaado - Mar 26, 2014 at 1:41 PM

        I see…. point taken.

  2. toodrunktotastethischicken - Mar 26, 2014 at 12:49 PM

    Now how does this work, does he have to go unclaimed for the Angels to be on the hook for the entire salary before another team can sign him for the league minimum?

    • paperlions - Mar 26, 2014 at 1:10 PM

      Yep, but he doesn’t have to sign for the minimum…there could be a bidding war.

      • kevinbnyc - Mar 26, 2014 at 3:09 PM

        Starting now? I’ll pay him $10 an hour to be my valet.

  3. spudchukar - Mar 26, 2014 at 12:51 PM

    Why does Jerry Dipoto still have a job? Does he have embarrassing pictures of Angels’ owner Arte Moreno?

    • pipkin42 - Mar 26, 2014 at 1:27 PM

      Moreno could be directing him to make some of these bad signings. He has a reputation as a very hands-on owner.

      • spudchukar - Mar 26, 2014 at 1:28 PM

        Well then he ought to fire himself too.

      • jwbiii - Mar 26, 2014 at 6:29 PM

        DiPoto is owning it at this point.

        #Angels GM Jerry Dipoto on Blanton: "It’s a mistake on my part, there's no one else to blame, I made the call on signing Joe."— Mike DiGiovanna (@MikeDiGiovanna) March 26, 2014

    • jarathen - Mar 26, 2014 at 5:01 PM

      Moreno is responsible for the Wilson, Pujols, and Hamilton signings, which have almost entirely crippled DiPoto’s ability to sign quality free agents (and extend others).

      Blanton was a terrible signing, and DiPoto owns that whole thing, but he also made some savvy moves this offseason to keep the team afloat before $27 million comes off the books at the end of the season.

      Also known as Trout money.

  4. missingdiz - Mar 26, 2014 at 12:57 PM

    $8.5 million just to go away. Man, I’ve got to learn to be more useless.

  5. losanginsight - Mar 26, 2014 at 1:08 PM

    That was quick. Los Jalos need to blow this whole team up. They are still only a 3rd place team and looks like the Mariners have more talent this year. Memo to owners: never hire an assistant to to assistant Head of scouting as a GM. I wonder how much of Alberts contact they will have to eat in a couple years. Last season he could barely run and it looks like Hamilton found a new coke connect in Santa Ana. Might as well trade Trout now or else he’s going escape this sinking ship.

  6. paperlions - Mar 26, 2014 at 1:18 PM

    One in the win column for understanding sunk costs.

  7. icanspeel - Mar 26, 2014 at 1:50 PM

    You have to be really bad to be paid 8.5 mill to not play on a team.

  8. zdravit - Mar 26, 2014 at 4:24 PM

    Skaggs ahoy!

  9. billyboots - Mar 27, 2014 at 12:18 PM

    I’m guessing Terry Ryan is thumbing through his Rolodex right now.

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