Astros decline Matt Albers’ option for 2015

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Injuries limited right-hander Matt Albers to just 10 innings this season and the Astros have declined the reliever’s $3 million option for 2015, buying him out for $200,000.

Albers had a very effective two-season run for the Red Sox, Diamondbacks, and Indians in 2012 and 2013, throwing a total of 123 innings with a 2.77 ERA despite just 5.8 strikeouts per nine innings.

When healthy enough to take the mound this season he remained effective, allowing just one run in eight appearances, but shoulder problems make it likely that he’ll have to accept a minor-league deal as a free agent.

Report: Mets sign Brad Brach to one-year, $850,000 contract

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The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports that the Mets and free agent reliever Brad Brach have agreed on a one-year deal worth $850,000. The contract includes a player option for the 2021 season with a base salary of $1.25 million and additional performance incentives.

Brach, 33, signed as a free agent with the Cubs this past February. After posting an ugly 6.13 ERA over 39 2/3 innings, the Cubs released him in early August. The Mets picked him up shortly thereafter. Brach’s performance improved, limiting opposing hitters to six runs on 15 hits and three walks with 15 strikeouts in 14 2/3 innings through the end of the season.

While Brach will add some much-needed depth to the Mets’ bullpen, his walk rate has been going in the wrong direction for the last three seasons. It went from eight percent in 2016 to 9.5, 9.7, and 12.8 percent from 2017-19. Needless to say the Mets are hoping that trend starts heading in the other direction next season.