Outfielder Nate Schierholtz has opted out of his contract with the Rangers to become a free agent, Stefan Stevenson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports. The Rangers had signed Schierholtz to a minor league deal in early February, which included a $1.75 million salary if he had made the major league roster.
Schierholtz hit just .265/.324/.265 in 34 Cactus League at-bats this spring. As the identical batting average and slugging percentage would suggest, none of his nine hits went for extra bases.
Schierholtz, 31, posted a disappointing .552 OPS in 383 plate appearances between the Cubs and Nationals last season. Though he’s well-regarded for his defense, teams will likely find it tough to accept his lackluster offense coming off of the bench.
The Marlins designated utilityman Derek Dietrich for assignment, Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald reports. This comes amid a flurry of moves on Tuesday night as teams prepare their rosters ahead of the Rule 5 draft next month.
Dietrich, 29, is coming off another strong season in which he hit .265/.330/.421 with 16 home runs, 45 RBI, and 72 runs scored in 551 plate appearances. He played all over the diamond, spending most of his time in left field and at first base. Dietrich also played some second base, third base, and right field.
Dietrich is entering his third of four years of arbitration eligibility. He earned $2.9 million this past season and MLB Trade Rumors projects him to earn $4.8 million in 2019. Cutting Dietrich represents a bit more than 4 million in savings for the rebuilding and perennially small-market Marlins. Dietrich should draw some interest, so the Marlins could end up trading him rather soon.
Wonder how J.T. Realmuto, now the longest-tenured Marlin, is feeling right about now.