Dodgers release Dustin McGowan, marginally clarifying their bullpen picture.

Dustin McGowan

Dustin McGowan had a 6.75 ERA in spring training. (Getty Images)

GLENDALE, Ariz. — The Dodgers officially released right-handed reliever Dustin McGowan on the final day of camp, helping to clarify their cluttered bullpen.

McGowan had already been informed that he wasn’t going to be on the club’s Opening Day roster. He signed a one-year contract early in camp and was due a retention bonus if the Dodgers decided to keep him on the roster into the regular season.

By releasing McGowan, the Dodgers save some money and simultaneously open a spot on the 40-man roster. That spot could go to non-roster invitees Sergio Santos, David Aardsma or David Huff.

Huff, a left-hander, could fill a long-relief role or make some spot starts in April and beyond, with Hyun-Jin Ryu expected to be out until the end of the month.

Santos and Aardsma, both right-handers, remain in the running for roster spots with only the three-game Freeway Series against the Angels remaining on the Dodgers’ exhibition schedule.

Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said Wednesday that the Freeway Series will actually be used to evaluate the pitchers on the bubble.

“I don’t think, with conversations we’ve had, that we’™ve made a decision” about the bullpen, Mattingly said. “That speaks to (the fact that) there’s a number of guys that have thrown the ball well. How do we put that together?”

McGowan, 33, allowed 12 hits and six runs — all earned — in eight Cactus League innings spanning seven appearances.

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About J.P. Hoornstra

J.P. Hoornstra covers the Dodgers, Angels and Major League Baseball for the Orange County Register, Los Angeles Daily News, Long Beach Press-Telegram, Torrance Daily Breeze, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Pasadena Star-News, San Bernardino Sun, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Whittier Daily News and Redlands Daily Facts. Before taking the beat in 2012, J.P. covered the NHL for four years. UCLA gave him a degree once upon a time; when he graduated on schedule, he missed getting Arnold Schwarzenegger's autograph on his diploma by five months.