Non-Tender Candidate: Ryan Church

For the second consecutive season, Ryan Church has played well enough to appear in 100 games, but poorly enough to become a non-tender candidate. Last year, the Braves non-tendered Church instead of offering him anything close to his 2009 salary of $2.8MM and he faces similar uncertainty heading into the 2010-11 offseason.

The Pirates signed Church for $1.5MM and saw him hit just .182/.240/.312 before they traded him to Arizona in July. The 31-year-old has hit well for the D'Backs, as his .279/.354/.535 line shows, but his 48 plate appearances in the desert haven't earned him any guarantees for 2011. 

Church has played all three outfield positions this year, and though he hasn't logged a significant number of innings in 2010, we can say that he is versatile and has posted slightly above average UZRs for seven consecutive seasons. His batting average on balls in play is 60 points below his career mark, but he is hitting fewer liners and more fly balls than usual, so this isn't purely a case of bad luck.

Despite his good at bats in Arizona and his versatility in the outfield, Church won't necessarily see a contract offer from the D'Backs. It won't be hard to find fourth outfielders for $1-2MM through free agency, so it seems unlikely that the D'Backs will offer Church a contract for a comparable amount of money after a mostly disappointing season. Let's see what you think. Click here to take the survey and here to view the results.


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