MLB non-tender deadline: Cubs part ways with Addison Russell; Blake Treinen, Kevin Pillar hit free agency
Plenty of notable names entered the free-agent pool on Monday night
Every winter, teams have to decide whether to tender contracts to their pre-arbitration and arbitration-eligible players for the next season by a certain day and time. This year's deadline passed at 8 p.m. ET on Monday night. Predictably, a number of notable players were informed they would not receive offers and instead would become free agents earlier than originally planned.
Here's a look at some of the most interesting non-tenders.
The Twins non-tendered C.J. Cron after one season in Minnesota. Cron, who turns 30 in January, was enjoying a good season before he went through a rough stretch due to an issue with his right thumb. At the end of October, Cron underwent a surgical debridement of his thumb, in order to remove dead or unhealthy tissue from the area. The initial recovery timeline is six to eight weeks, and it's unclear whether he will be ready for spring training. Cron was set to make upwards of $7 million in arbitration.
At just 25 years old, Jose Peraza was non-tendered by the Reds with three seasons of arbitration control remaining. After he was acquired via a three-team trade with the Dodgers and White Sox in 2015, Peraza had a breakout campaign in 2016 but went on to struggle to perform at the plate consistently. The second baseman dropped to a 62 OPS+ in his 141 games during the 2019 season. Plus, with the , the Reds have essentially solidified their infielders for the 2020 season.
The Mariners parted ways with outfielder Domingo Santana after one season. Santana, 27, would have been eligible for arbitration. He put up solid numbers last season, but missed 41 games due to injuries. The Mariners are likely to reinvest Santana's salary elsewhere on their roster.
The Cubs are moving on from second baseman Addison Russell. Russell played in just 82 games last season because of a violation of the league's domestic violence policy which resulted in a 40-game suspension. After five seasons with the Cubs, the 25 year old regressed at the plate over his final two seasons.
The Phillies non-tendered Maikel Franco and Cesar Hernandez as part of their attempt to revamp their infield for the 2020 season. Franco, 27, is one of the longest tenured players for Philadelphia after joining the big-league team in 2014 as the organization's top prospect. Hernandez was the Phillies' everyday second baseman for most of the last five seasons. The switch-hitting 29-year-old had a .279/.333/.408 slash line in 2019.
Right-hander Aaron Sanchez finished an uneven 2019 season, which resulted in requiring the 27-year-old to undergo shoulder surgery, with the Astros. Sanchez is set to miss the beginning of the 2020 season. If his recovery goes well, he could be pursued by multiple teams this winter.
Oakland Athletics reliever Blake Treinen is a free agent following last season's struggles. After finishing sixth in Cy Young voting in 2018, Treinen regressed in 2019, posting a 4.91 ERA and 37 walks in 58 2/3 innings.
The Giants non-tendered Kevin Pillar after a season in which the 30-year-old outfielder set career-highs in home runs (21) and RBI (88). San Francisco picked up Pillar from the Blue Jays at the start of the 2019 season. The non-tender is a surprising move, but the Giants decided to save money as the club is on the hook for some considerable contracts for Buster Posey, Evan Longoria and Johnny Cueto. Pillar was projected to earn about $10 million in the arbitration process.
Travis Shaw spent the 2019 season shuffling back and forth between Triple-A and the big leagues. With the Brewers, Shaw hit just seven home runs after crushing 32 homers in 2018. The 29-year-old, once a key part of Milwaukee's offense, was projected to make $4.7 million in arbitration.
Others who were non-tendered: 2B Yolmer Sanchez (White Sox); INF Tim Beckham (Mariners); LHP Danny Hultzen (Cubs); Charlie Culberson (Braves); RHP Ryan Burr (White Sox); RHP Trevor Hildenberger (Twins); C Caleb Joseph (Diamondbacks); LHP Caleb Frare (White Sox); RF Steven Souza Jr. (Diamondbacks); C Elias Diaz (Pirates); Kevin Gausman (Reds)
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