With option decisions due by midnight Monday, teams are beginning to make things official. We’ll have all of the transactions as they stream in.
Here are some obvious ones.
According to the Associated Press, via the New York Post, the Brewers have declined a $17.5 million mutual option on right-hander Francisco Rodriguez, paying him a $4 million buyout instead.
Rodriguez posted a strong 2.64 ERA and 79/26 K/BB ratio in 71 2/3 innings this season between the Mets and Brewers, and he should draw many suitors on the open market this winter, but $17.5 million is a pretty penny for any reliever — no matter how dominant.
The Brewers also declined a $6 million option on shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt. He has slugged a total of 29 home runs over the past two seasons, but he’s a poor defender and owns a pitiful .292 career on-base percentage. The next team to give him a try should strongly consider a position change.
John Farrell will return to manage the Red Sox next season, provided he is healthy enough to do so, the club announced Sunday morning in a press release.
Torey Lovullo, who has been serving as Boston’s interim manager since Farrell was diagnosed with lymphoma, signed a two-year contract to return as Farrell’s bench coach. Lovullo also forfeited his right to pursue another managerial role with the new deal.
Farrell guided the Red Sox to the World Series title in 2013 and the problems with the Red Sox over the last two seasons have been more about roster construction.
Dave Dombrowski took over the front office from Ben Cherington back in mid-August and will try to turn things around this winter.
All of the other coaches on Farrell’s staff will return except first-base coach Arnie Beyeler.
Stephen Piscotty took the brunt of a frightening outfield collision last week at PNC Park, but he only suffered a mild concussion and was cleared for baseball activities a couple days later.
Now he is back in the Cardinals’ starting lineup, batting second and playing right field Sunday in the first half of a doubleheader against the Braves at Atlanta’s Turner Field.
Piscotty has an impressive .867 OPS with seven home runs and 39 RBI over his first 62 major league games. He should be a big part of the Cardinals’ postseason push, drawing starts in the corner outfield spots and at first base.
St. Louis will get either the Pirates or Cubs in the NLDS.