Non-Tender Candidate: Cody Ross

When the Giants were awarded Cody Ross on waivers last month, it likely increased Ross' chances of being tendered a contract for 2011. If the Marlins were willing to give Ross up for nothing but salary relief, they may have decided to part ways with Ross this winter rather than going to arbitration with him once more. The Giants, on the other hand, have a crowded outfield now, but Aubrey Huff, Pat Burrell, and Jose Guillen will be free agents after the season, meaning there should be room for Ross if the Giants choose to retain him.

Ross, who will turn 30 this winter, is earning $4.45MM this season and will be entering his final year of arbitration eligibility. He'll receive a raise, but not one as significant as last year's $2.225MM bump. After hitting .266/.319/.477 and averaging 23 homers per season in 2008 and 2009, he has seen his power numbers drop this year (.261/.315/.393, 11 homers). Still, UZR ranks Ross as an above-average defender, and paying him $5-6MM would hardly cripple the Giants' payroll.

Ross' future in San Francisco could be dictated by how the team decides to replace (or retain) its free agent outfielders. The Giants were occasionally linked to free agents like Jason Bay and Matt Holliday last winter, but they elected to eschew the big names in favor of more affordable players. Given the success they've had with that approach, they could easily try it again, perhaps non-tendering Ross in the hopes of striking gold with an even cheaper option, as they did with Huff ($3MM).

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10 Comments on "Non-Tender Candidate: Cody Ross"

Bochy doesn’t seem to have much faith in the guy. I like him well enough, but he’s very similar to Rowand, who we’re stuck with either way. Torres will almost certainly be in CF next year; Schierholtz, Rowand, and DeRosa will fill in the other spots, with a potential free agent upgrade. 5M seems like a lot for a backup outfielder when you’ve got a few other options already under contract.

4 years 11 months ago

My God, I totally forgot about DeRosa. Yeah, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Ross non-tendered given his supposed return. Too bad, because Ross is certainly better.

4 years 11 months ago

Ross is much better than Rowand and still hard to figure how he ended up on one of the worst stadiums for his hitting style to succeed at. Sabean claimed him, but let Ross play at a place where HR’s don’t go to die for RH hitters and imagine his stats would be some better, even at Land Shark stadium the last few years where he even did fairly well.

Best situation for Ross would be a non tender so he could get out of there though for sure.

4 years 11 months ago

Hello, Mr. Ross? This is Reuben Amaro calling. As you may have heard we will be having an opening next year for a right fielder to hit behind Ryan Howard. The benefits include a LH heavy lineup, the opportunity to face tons of LH pitching, and a short porch in……Left Field.

Step into my office……………..

4 years 11 months ago

AT&T Park, when it comes to home runs, is neutral to right-handed pull hitters. Left center, right center, and right field is where you will see a notable deflation in power numbers, but Ross’ power is almost exclusively to true left. After hitting them over the bleachers in Miami, dingers in San Francisco should be no big deal as long as the wind isn’t blowing.

4 years 11 months ago

I doubt he’ll be back. Most of the pitchers are due raises, and if Huff and/or Burrell come back they’ll need at least small raises too. The only big salary coming off the books is Renteria, I don’t see the Giants blowing 2/3 of that money on a guy who isn’t a huge upgrade over Rowand as a backup OF. He’s also pretty bad against RHP, so he shouldn’t even be in the lineup most days.

4 years 11 months ago

I think the Tigers would consider him (for a bit cheaper of course) in case Boesch doesnt make adjustments.

4 years 11 months ago

Nice player but probably non-tendered and perhaps re-signed to lower cost.

Burrelll has already gone public stating that he is willing to accept a bench position with the Giants, which means his contract should not be for that much, $1-3M, though that would be an increase over the minimum the Giants paid him this season.

Other salaries coming off besides Renteria are Molina, Huff, Uribe, Wellemeyer, Medders, and Mota, that is roughly $20-25M. There is also the deferred payments for Bonds, which may or may not have been handled already, that’s never been made clear.

Not a matter of faith in Ross, matter of already had Burrell, Torres, Guillen, so there was no place for Ross. With Torres now out and Guillen battling a bulging disc in his neck, Ross is most definitely getting all the LHP starts plus RHP he has hit well against before in CF, plus games Guillen is out, he’ll probably get some starts in RF, and he even started in LF yesterday. Bochy likes personal history matchups so that will probably govern who between Rowand and Ross starts in CF against RHP, and if either gets hot, then Bochy likes to play the hot hand as well. Ross should see a lot of action in the rest of the season unless he doesn’t hit.

Anyway, I think the Giants are going to have to be cautious and name DeRosa the super-utility starter, which is the title Uribe had the past couple of years, starting at one position when needed, but otherwise in the lineup regularly at some position. With Pablo scuffling against LHP, DeRosa would make a nice platoon there if it continues. He can also play 2B, LF, RF, and at premium defensive value, plus 1B and SS in a pitch.

Burrell offering to be paid bench is great, but he’s probably the starting LF in 2011, Torres the CF, with RF open for competition between Schierholtz, Rowand and whoever is the 5th OF. And DeRosa will probably be in the mix for playing time there as well.

That could also be Ross, particularly if he agrees to a similar contract to his 2010 salary, or less. But there will be a lot of raises in 2011, plus assuming they resign Huff to a $5-7M contract and then there is either re-signing Uribe to start at SS or finding another free agent, which will still cost a bit of money, the Giants cannot add on Ross without going higher on their budget level for 2010, pointing to a probable non-tender, but the Giants probably would love to sign him to a lower contract.

4 years 11 months ago

The fact is that the Giants off season signings will all depend on what happens with Huff. It will be a tricky situation because he has earned a new, multi-year contract. He has won over the fans and has carried the Giants for majority of the season. I think Huff will be signed with the hope of him playing 1B, but the ability for him to play LF is a big plus. The Giants have MANY questions going into next year. 1B, LF, RF, SS are all big holes. Huff will fill one of those spots and DeRosa will likely be penciled in as a starter too. Ross will be a late off season addition if he is going to be signed. He is not a BIG part of the off season yet.

I could see Burrell in a specific role, maybe a platoon type role, but he cannot be signed as an everyday outfielder and expect the numbers he is putting up this year.

4 years 11 months ago

nice post