This Offseason’s Mutual Options

One year ago, MLBTR's Mike Axisa asked whether mutual options were baseball's new fad, after at least a dozen were included in contracts during the 2009-10 offseason.  As Mike explained, mutual options are almost never picked up by both sides.  Instead, they're one way of pushing dollars onto next year's payroll, a more basic version of deferred money.  The team can also avoid the buyout altogether when the player declines, in many cases.  Here's a look at the eleven contracts from this offseason that included mutual options:

Francoeur's buyout is unknown, but otherwise overall the buyouts accounted for 8.7% of the total guaranteed money.  At most, a mutual option is a way of pushing a million bucks onto next year's payroll to create flexibility this year.


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