It’s not nice to horde all the good things in the world, so kudos to the Braves for selflessly allowing all the other baseball teams the opportunity to have Kyle Fanrsworth and Rick Ankiel on their roster by declining to exercise their options. Don’t cry for them, though: they each get six-figure buyouts, which is the closest anyone will ever get to stealing without breaking the law.
OK, I’ll try to be fair. Ankiel hit .261/.317/.467 in 92 at-bats for the Royals, and while that wasn’t worth the $3.5 million deal Kansas City inexplicably gave him before last season, it’s not utterly useless. He declined after the trade to Atlanta. Farnsworth had a similar season dynamic: useful — actually pretty darn useful with the Royals — and then falling off after being shipped to Atlanta. Overall he posted a a 61/19 K/BB ratio and a 3.34 ERA in 64 2/3 innings. Which should be enough to get him a job as a middle reliever someplace.
You just sort of hope that place isn’t near your team, though.