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Tough luck for Corey and Figueroa........
Today, the Pittsburgh Pirates released two players, pitchers Mark Corey and Nelson Figueroa.
Corey is a 30-year old journeyman reliever with a career ERA of 6.02. Not exactly prime property, but the kind of guy you'd expect the Pirates to be locking up to a long-term deal. For Corey, its up to finding a minor league deal somewhere, then hoping for another shot. I predict he will be in Milwaukee for spring training.
Figueroa was a one-time prospect in the Mets system who has since bounced around a bit. He's got decent strikeout numbers, and he took a pretty good shot at it with a decent debut with the Phillies in 2001.
The problem for Figueroa is that he'll turn 31 next spring and his chance to develop into a useful major leaguer has probablly expired. Right now his best bet is a minor league deal, and to turn a hot spring training into a job as the 10th or 11th pitcher on the roster.
He has the potential to be somewhat valuable as a swingman (sort of an endangered species), a long reliever, or a spot starter for some club. Not a bad guy for some GM to take a chance on, but not somebody to worry about keeping on the 40-man roster.