SIX-YEAR FREE-AGENT: Jeffry Antigua, LHP Julio Borbon, OF Marcelo Carreno, RHP Lendy Castillo, RHP Hunter Cervenka, LHP (see NOTE) Casey Coleman, RHP Aaron Cunningham, OF Paolo Espino, RHP Eduardo Figueroa, RHP Luis Flores, C Edgar Gonzalez, INF Carlos Gutierrez, RHP Marcus Hatley, RHP Marcos Mateo, RHP Darnell McDonald, OF Jonathon Mota, INF Thomas Neal, OF Starling Peralta, RHP Carlos Pimentel, RHP Dae-Eun Rhee, RHP Jose Rosario, RHP Brian Schlitter, RHP Ryan Searle, RHP Jeudy Valdez, INF Chris Valaika, INF Casper Wells, OF Eli Whiteside, C NOTE: Hunter Cervenka will be eligible to be a Rule 55 minor league 6YFA post-2014 if he signed a 2008 contract when he signed his "first contract" with the Boston Red Sox on 8-15-2008. However, if he was “Signed for Future Service“ (first contract was a 2009 contract), he will not be eligible to be a Rule 55 minor league 6YFA until post-2015.
SECOND CONTRACT MINOR LEAGUE FA: Michael de la Cruz, RHP (previously released by TEX) Carlos Figueroa, INF (previously released by CHC) Humberto Garcia, INF (previously released by CHW) Alan Oaks, RHP (previously released by MIA) Yomar Pacheco, RHP (previously released by PIT) Brohiglyn Rivero, RHP (previously released by TB) Orbandy Rodriguez, RHP (previously released by AZ) Roberto Vahlis, C (previously released by TOR)
1. A minor league player eligible to be an ARTICLE XX-D FREE-AGENT who accepts an Outright Assignment and defers free-agency until the end of the season is not eligible to be a free-agent if the player is added back to an MLB 40-man roster by the end of the MLB regular season. If the player is not added back to a 40-man roster by the end of the MLB regular season, the player can file for free-agency beginning on the day after the conclusion of the MLB regular season up through October 15th.
2. A minor league player eligible to be an MLB RULE 55 FREE-AGENT is not eligible to be a FA if the player is added to his club’s 40-man roster by 5 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day following the conclusion of the World Series.
Reader "Chad" sent me along this file of Jim Hendry doing a "phoner" on the Jim Rome show. I believe it was from yesterday's program. I can't say there was anything too revealing in it, but I'm sure some of you will want to take a listen.
The Cubs and Diamondbacks play in Tucson, their first meeting since the clubs matched up in last season's NLDS. (I don't recall who won.) Carlos Zambrano makes his second appearance of the Spring after pitching two scoreless innings against the Giants last Friday. Kosuke Fukudome had a big day in yesterday's loss to the Brewers, collecting three hits while batting in the two hole. Plus he has learned how to yank Bruce Miles's chain.
It's not often that I take something from the comments and put it on the front page, but I found myself agreeing so strongly with the following "tirade" that got buried in amongst yesterday's Bears talk (guys, you should know better, follow real football - you know, the one in which they use their feet) that I thought I'd give it a little attention...
433-- I just don't get why Hendry has started agreeing to the player option to become a FA mid-contract. All that does is give the player leverage to renegotiate the deal at that point -- if the player CAN become a free agent, he essentially IS a free agent for negotiating purposes.
If the player is unable to use the FA opt-out as leverage (because it's unlikely that he would be able to get a better deal elsewhere), that will just mean that he is being paid above market by the Cubs at the time.
The thing I dislike most about that option is that it's self-defeating. Here's how. We have to assume that Hendry offers the option as a way to secure a salary that's slightly less attractive to the player in some way (amount, years, structure, etc.) than the player might accept without the option. (If that's not true, then the option wouldn't be offered in the first place.)
But if the player agrees to a salary that isn't the absolute best he can get, it just makes it that much more likely that the player will be at a below-market salary when the option kicks in, and consequently able to use the option as renegotiating leverage. So even if the option "works", it backfires.
I know that each deal is a unique negotiation and it's likely that Hendry gets something in return for this concession (i.e. it may be the final throw-in in order to get the player comfortable with the dollars offered). But this term really has the potential to blow up in Hendry's face.
It is indeed a trend amongst Hendry's deals of late, and it's one I also don't like. I'm also really not a fan of the more traditional player option at the end of a contract, which can be used to similar ends, and which is the only reason Glendon Rusch has himself a shiny new two-year deal right now. Not that it's a terrible deal in this market - as you probably know, I'm a bit of a Glendon Rusch fan. Still.
"Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka's baseball future was thrown into flux Thursday when the president of the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles told a newspaper that the team might not make the prized starter available to major league teams as a free agent this winter."
Don't know if others have seen this, but I just stumbled upon it. Great video recapping baseball in the 1980s. A couple of Cubs stuff in there (Dawson, 1984, 1989, Lights a Wrigley), but just great all around: