Butler Released In Wake Of Lockeroom Fight

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — The Oakland Athletics have released designated hitter Billy Butler despite still owing him $10 million for next season.

The A’s made the move Sunday.

Last month, Butler went on the concussion disabled list after a clubhouse altercation with teammate Danny Valencia.

The 30-year-old Butler was in the second season of a three-year, $30 million contract. He was batting .276 with four home runs and 31 RBIs in 85 games this year.

“It was time to move on,” A’s general manager David Forst said. “The at-bats just weren’t there.”

Said manager Bob Melvin: “We wish him the best, but it just never ended up being a great fit here.”

Butler acknowledged frustration with a diminished platoon role in Oakland after playing every day most of his career. He believes he still has a lot to offer.

“You don’t have the type of at-bats I have in the big leagues with the type of success I have for not being able to hit both sides,” Butler said. “I feel I can bring that to a team at a championship level and I’ve proven that.”

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