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Monday, November 3, 2003
Cardinals decline option on reliever Fassero


ST. LOUIS -- Jeff Fassero's $1.5 million option was declined Monday by the St. Louis Cardinals, and the pitcher then filed for free agency.

Fassero, 40, was 1-7 with a 5.68 ERA in 77 2-3 innings over 62 games last season. The left-hander struck out 55, walked 34 and had three saves in six chances.

Fassero, who gets a $250,000 buyout, was acquired from the Chicago Cubs in August 2002.

He becomes the 13th St. Louis player to file for free agency, a group that includes pitchers Cal Eldred, Sterling Hitchcock, Steve Kline, Lance Painter, Russ Springer, Garrett Stephenson and Brett Tomko.

The other Cardinals who have filed are catchers Chris Widger and Joe Girardi; infielder Miguel Cairo; and outfielders Orlando Palmeiro and Eduardo A. Perez.