Mar 3, 2014; Jupiter, FL, USA; Houston Astros left fielder J.D. Martinez (20) at bat against the Miami Marlins at Roger Dean Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

J.D. Martinez released by Astros

Roster cuts are an inevitability of Spring Training and some catch you by surprise more than others.

This morning, the Houston Astros announced that they have released outfielder J.D. Martinez. Martinez had been the Astros fourth outfielder the last three seasons, having been called up when Hunter Pence was traded to the Phillies. The move sees the Astros separate from a player they drafted in 2009.

Last season, Martinez played in 86 games for the Astros, hitting .250/.272/.378 with 7 home runs and 36 RBI while manning left field primarily.

GM Jeff Lunhow tells Brian McTaggart of that having to cut the 26-year old is a result of the team developing an excess of younger players.

We had a lot of history with J.D., and he’s got some value as a right-handed power hitter, outfielder. We really feel like to a certain extent we’re a victim of our own success. As we continue to develop young talent, we’re going to end up not having room for some players who fit in in the past and could fit in with other clubs. We wish him the best. We still think he’s a Major League player. It’s just not a fit for our club right now.

The Astros are now looking at a starting outfield of trade acquisition Dexter Fowler, LJ Hoes, and Robbie Grossman.

Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish reports that several teams have already been in contact with J.D. Martinez.

Tags: Houston Astros

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