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Brian Shouse Released by Red Sox

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It looks like the battle for the bullpen has just been reduced by one.

According to the Boston Globe, the Red Sox have released Brian Shouse:

Meanwhile, Brian Shouse was shaking hands in the clubhouse this morning, and had a bag packed. That generally indicates that he's headed elsewhere. The lefthander's future with the Sox was put in jeopardy when the team signed Alan Embree recently, and he has apparently come to the end of the road with Boston. No official announcement has been made on Shouse.

UPDATE: Shouse has been released, according to a team source.

What's a guy got to do to win a bullpen job? Shouse allowed just one earned run in 9.1 innings of work this spring. He struck out six while walking just one. Fortunately, the Red Sox have a couple more viable options* (Scott Atchison, Joe Nelson), so they can afford to make this move.

*Options may or may not include Alan Embree, but I refuse to list his name.

UPDATE, 9:56 a.m.: The Herald's Mike Silverman has an interesting tweet on the matter:

Shouse: 0.96 ERA. 6K, 1BB, 9.1 I. Nice numbers but #RedSox didn't like swings hitters were taking - not fooled. Plus Embree's here

See, numbers aren't everything. I'm curious who defines "Red Sox," though. Terry Francona? Theo Epstein? John Farrell?

I'm still rooting for Nelson or Atchison to make the 'pen. I think Nelson would give the best performance, but I love the story behind Atchison. And, still, I don't want to talk about Embree making the team.