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Reliever John Axford withdraws from Canada's World Baseball Classic roster

Axford withdraws from Canada's WBC roster

OTTAWA — Reliever John Axford withdrew from Canada's World Baseball Classic team on Sunday due to personal and professional reasons.

Axford, from Port Dover, Ont., had a 6-4 record with three saves, a 3.97 earned-run average and 60 strikeouts for the Oakland Athletics last season.

He has a 34-32 record with 144 saves over eight major league seasons. He has a career ERA of 3.58 with 514 strikeouts.

Right-handed pitcher Jesen Therrien, from Montreal, will take Axford's spot on Canada's roster.

Therrien, 23, is a member of the Philadelphia Phillies organization and spent the 2016 season between double-A Reading and high-A Clearwater.

He represented Canada at the 2010 under-18 Baseball World Cup and in 2011 at the U18 Pan Am Championships where Canada won a silver medal.

The Canadian Press