Jon Heyman of SI.com reports that Orlando Hudson will decline the Twins’ arbitration offer, which is expected following reports that the two sides reached a so-called gentleman’s agreement where Hudson would turn down the offer if the team made it.
That allows the Twins to essentially get a free compensatory draft pick. There’s no real benefit for Hudson, but it also doesn’t cost him anything and his agent gets points for doing the Twins a favor.
Amusingly, Heyman calls Hudson a “fine player who could help any clubhouse.”
In fairness Heyman is also the same guy who calls every signing a good move. However, in this case Hudson is being let go in part because the Twins specifically didn’t like his presence in the clubhouse, as multiple sources affiliated with the team told me throughout the season that his outspoken jokester act grew tiresome even though national media members like Heyman continue to tout it as a positive trait.
Hudson will be playing for a fourth team in four seasons despite consistently solid performances on the field, so you can probably do the math there.
Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.
McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).
McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.