Jurrjens opts for free agency

Jurrjens opts for free agency
July 18, 2013, 2:45 pm
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Baltimore Orioles starting pitcher Jair Jurrjens (48) reacts as he falls to the ground after he got hit by ball during the second inning against the New York Yankees at Ed Smith Stadium.

(Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)

Jair Jurrjens, who the Orioles signed to a minor league contract amid much fanfare last February, has severed ties with the team.

Jurrjens had been designated for assignment last Friday when the Orioles purchased the contract of Jairo Asencio, and after he cleared waivers, the team attempted to assign him outright to Norfolk. He declined the assignment and declared for free agency.

In two appearances with one start for the Orioles, Jurrjens allowed four runs on nine hits in 7 2/3 innings.

Two years ago, Jurrjens was a National League All-Star before suffering knee and groin injuries. The Atlanta Braves did not tender him a contract last November, and it was reported Jurrjens had agreed to terms in January with the Orioles. It took three weeks and a radical reworking of his contract until the signing was announced in the early days of spring training.

Jurrjens was considered a longshot to make the club, but was attractive because he had options remaining.

At Norfolk, Jurrjens was 6-6 with a 4.18 ERA, and with Zach Britton, Kevin Gausman, Josh Stinson and Tsuyoshi Wada on the staff and Steve Johnson rehabbing, saw that his path back to the majors would be a difficult one with Baltimore.

The 27-year-old has a 53-37 major league record and a 3.63 ERA. He won 14 games in 2010 and 13 games in 2009 and 2011.4

He signed a contract guaranteeing him $1.75 million in the majors and up to $2.25 million in performance bonuses. Jurrjens’ minor league salary was $250,000.