Aug 4, 2014; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Indians relief pitcher John Axford (44) pitches during the ninth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Progressive Field. The Indians beat the Reds 7-1. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Pittsburgh Pirates Add Reliever John Axford Off Waivers From Cleveland

The Pittsburgh Pirates have picked up relief pitcher John Axford off waivers from the Cleveland Indians. The move was announced on Thursday afternoon after the Bucs’ 5-2 loss to the Tigers in Detroit.

Axford, 31, has struggled this year for the Tribe, posting a 2-3 record with 3.92 ERA over 49 appearances. He has issued 30 walks and struck out 51 in 43 2/3 innings of work. He was also 10 of 13 in save opportunities and lost his job as the Indians’ closer back in May.

Cleveland will not be getting a player back in return.

The 6-foot-5 right-hander signed a one-year, $4.5 million contract prior to this season and is under control through 2016. The Pirates will be responsible for the remaining portion of Axford’s 2014 salary, which is an estimated $1.3 million.

Over 330 career games with the Milwaukee Brewers, St. Louis Cardinals and Indians, the Simcoe, Ontario native has put up a 24-22 record with a 3.37 ERA and 116 saves.

UPDATE: The Pirates have designated first baseman Matt Hague for assignment to help make room for Axford on the 40-man roster.

Charlie Wilmoth of Bucs Dugout on is also reporting that Stolmy Pimentel will be placed on the DL to create space on the major-league squad.

Tags: John Axford Neal Huntington Pittsburgh Pirates

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