Rays designate reliever Balfour for assignment

April 18, 2015


Grant Balfour's rocky stint with the Tampa Bay Rays has reached an end.

The team designated the veteran reliever for assignment Saturday night, after he allowed a grand slam to Chris Young in the top of the seventh inning during the New York Yankees' 9-0 victory at Tropicana Field.

Consequently, the Rays promoted reliever Brandon Gomes from Triple-A Durham.

Balfour, 37, never realized what Tampa Bay's management envisioned for him when he signed a two-year, $12 million contract on Jan. 23, 2014. An All-Star with the Oakland Athletics in 2013, he was signed to be the Rays' closer last season. But he was demoted from that role in June as part of a campaign in which he posted a 4.91 ERA and three blown saves in 62 1/3 innings.

Balfour had allowed no runs and two hits in five appearances this season before he walked three batters and surrendered the grand slam Saturday. He's scheduled to make $7 million this year.

You can follow Andrew Astleford on Twitter @aastleford or email him at aastleford@gmail.com.

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