Patriots LB Mayo announces retirement

After eight seasons with the New England Patriots, linebacker Jerod Mayo is calling it quits.

Mayo announced his retirement at age 29 from the NFL on Tuesday through an Instagram post.

“After a lot of thought, Chantel and I take this opportunity to express our sincere gratitude for what we consider a life changing event … that of becoming a New England Patriot for the past 8 years,” Mayo wrote. “We are extremely grateful to “Thundercat,” Jonathan, the Kraft family, Coach Belichick, the Pats organization and the most amazing fans in contributing to these pages of our lives. As my family and I prepare for the future, be sure that the Pats memories will always hold a special place in our hearts.”

Mayo was the 10th overall pick by the Patriots in the 2008 draft. He went to be named Associated Press Defensive Rookie of the Year and to two Pro Bowl berths while also winning a Super Bowl championship.

But the last three years of Mayo’s career were plagued by injuries that included a torn pectoral muscle in 2013 and a torn patellar tendon in 2014 that landed him on injured reserve.

In Mayo’s final season in 2015, he finished with 47 tackles and one sack in 16 games, but he started just eight games while battling a shoulder injury.

Mayo’s retirement will save the Patriots about $7 million in salary-cap space in 2016.

RHP Marmol signs minor league deal with Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox signed reliever Carlos Marmol on Tuesday to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

The 33-year-old veteran has a career 23-35 record with 117 saves and a 3.57 ERA with the Chicago Cubs, Los Angeles Dodgers and Miami Marlins. He was an All-Star in 2008 while pitching for the Cubs.

Last season, the right-hander pitched for Columbus, the Cleveland Indians’ Triple-A affiliate, and went 3-1 with a 2.03 ERA in 28 appearances, posting 27 walks and 48 strikeouts in 31 innings.

Control issues have plagued Marmol throughout his major league career. He last pitched in the majors for the Marlins in 2014, going 0-3 with an 8.10 ERA, 10 walks and 14 strikeouts 13 1/3 innings spanning 15 appearances.

McQuaid back with Bruins

The Boston Bruins activated defenseman Adam McQuaid from injured reserve and sent defenseman Colin Miller to Providence of the American Hockey League.

McQuaid was active for Tuesday night’s game in Columbus, Ohio, against the Blue Jackets. He had not played since Jan. 5 after sustaining an upper-body injury.

Strasburg to pursue free agency after 2016 season

Stephen Strasburg plans to test the open market at the end of 2016 and will not discuss a new contract with the Washington Nationals during the season.

Strasburg, the No. 2 starter for the Nationals behind Max Scherzer, agreed to a one-year, $10.4 million contract to avoid salary arbitration, but agent Scott Boras said no further talks are planned on a long-term extension with the team that drafted Strasburg No. 1 overall in 2009 draft.

Strasburg will be just 28 when he hits the market if he sticks to the plan to test free agency. Given the market for starting pitchers, Strasburg might command $25 million to $30 million per season, the stratosphere created this offseason for free agents David Price (Red Sox) and Zack Grienke (Diamondbacks).

Strasburg, 27, was 11-7 last season but shoulder and back issues limited him to 23 starts. He had surgery on his back to remove a benign growth that is not expected to be a factor in spring training or the regular season.