The Tsuyoshi Nishioka Project did not go over well in Minnesota. The Japanese import was supposed to be the Twins' everyday second baseman, but Nishioka was an abysmal hitter (and overall player), posting a .267 OBP and -2.5 WAR over his two seasons.
Since the Twins kept Nishioka in the minors for most of 2012, he probably didn't think the last year of his contract would go any better than the first two. So, he and the Twins mutually decided to part ways, with one stipulation: he would relinquish the right to the guaranteed $3.5 million that was left on his contract. Nishioka didn't hesitate to take this offer. He even apologized for sucking!
From USA Today's Gabe Lacques:
Said Nishioka in a statement released by the Twins: "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."
Every David-Eckstein-loving baseball writer now needs a new pair of pants.