The Philadelphia Phillies and right-handed reliever Juan Cruz have mutually decided to rescind the veteran's contract agreement, once again making him a free agent, according to Todd Zolecki of MLB.com.
The Phillies and Cruz agreed last month to a one-year minor league contract that included an invitation to major league spring training. While the deal was reported, Cruz never formally signed the agreement, basically leaving him floating in "The Matrix," according to Matt Gelb of The Philadelphia Inquirer. Following Philadelphia's signing of reliever Chad Durbin, Cruz and the team decided there wasn't a need for his services after all.
Cruz spent the 2012 season with the Pittsburgh Pirates. While his ERA was solid - 2.78 over 43 appearances spanning 35 2/3 innings - he walked 4.8 batters and allowed 9.8 hits per nine innings. This led the Pirates to cut the veteran last summer.
Cruz has always struggled with allowing too many base runners, as he's averaged 8.4 hits and 5.1 walks per nine since 2009. Despite his inconsistencies, Cruz has managed to maintain a somewhat respectable career ERA of 4.05 over 12 seasons in the majors.
With Cruz out of the picture, the Phillies currently project a bullpen that includes Durbin, Jonathan Papelbon, Mike Adams, Antonio Bastardo and Michael Stutes, among others.