By Maureen Mullen
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- According to a baseball source, the Red Sox have released right-handed reliever Matt Albers to allow him to play in Japan. The Sox, however, have denied the report.
Albers is out of options and must be clear waivers if the team attempts to send him to the minors. Earlier this week, Sean McAdam reported the Red Sox were shopping Albers to other major-league teams.
Albers, who signed as a free agent in December, has appeared in seven Grapefruit League games, compiling a 1.80 ERA with one save. He's given up two earned runs over 10 innings with eight hits, no walks, and 11 strikeouts.
Albers, who turned 28 in January, was selected by the Houston Astros in the 23rd round of the 2001 amateur draft, making his major league debut in 2006. In two seasons with the Astros and three with the Orioles, Albers compiled a record of 15-25 with a 5.11 ERA in 181 games (23 starts).
The Red Sox reportedly will receive an undisclosed sum of money for Albers.
Maureen Mullen is on Twitter at http:twitter.commaureenamullen