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Ankiel's option declined by Braves

Former Cardinals pitcher and outfielder Rick Ankiel has been cut loose by the Braves who declined a contract option that would have paid him $6 million in 2011. Instead, he'll get a $500,000 buyout.

Ankiel signed the deal over the 2009-2010 off-season with the Royals but was traded to Atlanta in mid-season. He hit .261 in an injury shortened time with Kansas City and .210 in Atlanta's run for the playoffs.

In his three full seasons as an outfielder, Ankiel has always had trouble staying healthy. He's never played more than 122 games in a season