Pittsburgh Pirates second baseman Neil Walker will miss the remaining six games of the season with a herniated disk in his back, MLB.com reported Friday. The decision was made after Walker visited a back specialist earlier in the day. Walker batted .280 with 14 home runs and 69 RBI in 129 games. ---Minnesota Twins infielder Tsuyoshi Nishioka was granted his unconditional release Friday, making him a free agent. Nishioka requested his release, absolving the Twins of their 2013 financial obligations, which included a $3 million salary or a $250,000 buyout. "I would like to thank the Twins organization for helping me fulfill my dream of playing in Major League Baseball," Nishioka said in a statement. "I take full responsibility for my performance which was below my own expectations. At this time, I have made the decision that it is time to part ways. I have no regrets and know that only through struggle can a person grow stronger. I appreciate all the support the team and the fans in Minnesota and Rochester have shown me. Arigatou gozaimasu (Thank you)." The 28-year-old batted .215 in 233 at-bats over two seasons. He spent most of the 2012 season at Triple-A Rochester. ---An investigation of potential criminal wrongdoing in the fall of Curt Schilling's video-game company 38 Studios has been dropped, the U.S. Attorney's office in Rhode Island said Friday. "This office conducted a very narrowly focused review for potential violations of various federal statutes, including bank fraud," Jim Martin, a spokesman for U.S. Attorney Peter Neronha, told the Providence Journal. "That review is concluded and there will be no further review." The investigation began after a previous Providence Journal report that said the Bank Rhode Island had loaned $8.5 million earlier this year to help the now-bankrupt company stay in business. Subpoenas were issued to the bank and the Rhode Island Economic Development Corp., which sold $75 million in taxpayer-backed bonds to lure 38 Studios to Providence in 2010.
- Tsuyoshi Nishioka