Monday, 31 October 2011

Jays exercise Edwin, decline Rauch. Sabathia re-ups with NYY

Cool.  Just what I wanted for my Halloween present.

I think this was a slam dunk in both directions.  Edwin secured this option with a really strong final four months of the season, while the only good thing Rauch did all year was have that funny blowup at the umpire on Canada Day weekend.

Edwin will enter the upcoming season (probably) as the everyday DH, and will hopefully continue to tear the cover off the ball the way he did from July onwards.  He was kind of close to becoming a type-B free agent, but was ultimately getting too many AB's as 1B/DH to obtain enough Elias ranking points or whatever.  Had he been a type-B, the Jays might have been more inclined to let Edwin go and test the free agent waters, with hopes of getting a draft pick back.

Rauch is coming off his worst season, putting up -0.6 fWAR, and a 4.85 ERA, outperforming his fip of 5+.  He was really terribad in pretty much all situations, but still, somehow, will be a type-B free agent.  I don't think there's any prayer that the Jays offer arbitration, nor would he decline it, unless there was an agreement in place before the season.  No team would have to surrender a draft pick to sign Rauch, so there's really not that much to lose for Rauch to agree to such a thing.  Well, a couple million bucks, but he didn't know that he was going to be awful coming in to this deal.  Rauch made $3.5MM this season, and would likely get a raise in arbitration-- a raise that he wouldn't get on the free agent market after dropping such a turd this year.

The Orioles met with Jays' assisstant manager Tony LaCava again today.  LaCava is a strong contender to become the O's next GM, which stinks for us, but is probably pretty good for him I guess.

The Elias Sports Bureau released their free agent rankings today.  Bluejays Kelly Johnson (type-A), Jose Molina, Frank Francisco, Jon Rauch, and Shawn Camp (Type-B's) will all be worth draft picks if they're offered arbitration and decline, opting for free agency.

In New York, Via MLBTR, a bunch of people are reporting that CC Sabathia has agreed to an extension with the Yankees, rather than opting out of his deal.  This is a surprise to absolutely nobody.  The extension maintains Sabathia's remaining 4 years and $96MM, adding on a 1 year $25MM deal for 2016, and also gives him a $25MM option for 2017 that vests automatically if Sabathia doesn't finish the 2016 season on the DL with a left shoulder injury, or miss 45 days of the 2016 season.  So in total, the extension is 4 yrs $92MM that he was convinced to not opt out of, plus a 1y/$25MM, plus 1 vesting option at $25MM.  Sabathia will recieve a $5MM buyout if the option in 2017 doesn't vest.

CJ Wilson and Yu Darvish are now the best starters on the market.

The D-backs announced that they have declined their option on Aaron Hill, making him a free agent.  He put up an .878 OPS in Arizona over a small sample, so they could reasonably take him back.  The Jays could theoretically make him an offer if Kelly Johnson declines arbitration and becomes a free agent.

The Rays exercised their $7.5MM option on James Shields.  He'll still be trade bait, but they have him for another year and he'd obviously be a big help for the Rays.  Look for some James Shields trade rumors over the offseason.

Francisco Cordero had his $12MM option declined by the Reds today.  He'll be a free agent, and probably won't get an arbitration offer, which would nullify the compensation for the type-A reliever.  If he doesn't get an arbitration offer, look for the Jays to be interested.

Aaron Harang's $5MM option was declined by the Padres.  He's coming off a pretty good season, albeit pitching in San Diego.  I hope the Jays don't look in to signing him, because he's not that good, but he's a starter who can eat up some innings, so I wouldn't be surprised to hear something at some point this offseason about AA dilligencing.

The Pirates did something silly (in my opinion) and declined their option on Paul Maholm.  Apparently they didn't think a young lefty was tradeable in a weak market for starting pitching.

David Aardsma put up some strong numbers pitching in Seattle over the last two seasons, before missing all year this year for Tommy John surgery.  He has elected to become a free agent after being waived by the Mariners.  Reclamation project!

The White Sox are rumored to be trying to cut costs and rebuild some dignity, but apparently they're not trying very hard, as they've exercised their option on Jason Frasor.  I figure they'll opt for a trade instead of declining the option and offering arbitration hoping for draft picks.  Now they have an expensive reliever on their roster to help them win 75 games again.

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