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The Carson Smith era with Red Sox is over

Rob Bradford
November 01, 2018 - 4:29 pm

The guy who was once thought to have a chance to replace Craig Kimbrel as the Red Sox' closer is gone before Kimbrel could even become a free agent.

The Red Sox announced Thursday that they had outrighted Carson Smith from the major league roster, leading the reliever to elect free agency. 

Smith, who was acquired with Roenis Elias from Seattle for Jonathan Aro and Wade Miley, pitched in 18 games for the Red Sox in 2018 before needing right shoulder surgery. The 29-year-old appeared in just 11 games prior to this past season, undergoing Tommy John surgery early in the 2016 campaign.

The relationship between Smith and the Red Sox appeared fractured after he insinuated that early-season over-use had led to his shoulder injury, which was brought on by the pitcher throwing his glove in anger.

Manager Alex Cora responded to Smith's assertions.

“I don’t agree with it,” Cora said. “I don’t agree with it. On a daily basis, we talk to pitchers and how they feel. If they don’t they can pitch that day, we stay away from them. It caught me by surprise. If he felt that way he should’ve told it to us or he should’ve mentioned it. There was a day in New York or Toronto, New York I think, we talked and he said he wasn't available that day and we stayed away from him.”

Smith would have been heading into his second year of being arbitration-eligible before Thursday's transaction.

Other moves announced by the team included Dustin Pedroia, Austin Maddox and Marco Hernandez being reinstated to the major league roster from the 60-day disabled list. Tony Renda and Justin Haley were outright from the big league roster.

Related: Alex Cora doesn't agree with Carson Smith's claims