Tigers To Exercise Pudge’s Option?

Tigers catcher Ivan Rodriguez has a $13MM option for ’08 with a $3MM buyout attached.  Last we’d heard, the Tigers were likely to exercise it for lack of a better option.

Tom Gage of the Detroit News believes not only that the Tigers will exercise the option, but that privately the team has already committed to it.  Gage mentions that Pudge is seen as a symbol of the team’s rebirth and that he’s been far too jovial in the clubhouse for a guy with an uncertain future.  Wow, that last sentence was really poorly written.

Gage also adds that Nate Robertson is the Tiger most likely to be traded.  Robertson’s salary will climb past $4MM in arbitration.  Personally I think they should hang on to him instead of selling low.  But even following an off year he’d be highly sought after this winter.  I like Robertson quite a bit in the NL.  He could have a Ted Lilly-like transformation.

Gage mentions a $20MM escalation in payroll for current players, but I’ve found the net effect to be a $7.5MM increase.

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