Who Could Be Released This Month?

With certain contracts, there comes a time when a team would prefer to pay the player to go away and free up a roster spot.  For example, two years ago the Tigers ate $14MM in releasing Gary Sheffield and the Phillies assumed $8MM to let Geoff Jenkins go.  Here's a look at some big money players who I think stand a chance of being cut this month.

  • Oliver Perez, Mets: one year, $12MM.  A team insider told ESPN's Adam Rubin three days ago that Perez is highly likely to be released.  Today Perez allowed three runs in the first inning of a split-squad game and followed that with a couple of scoreless frames.
  • Luis Castillo, Mets: one year, $6MM.  Rubin wrote that Castillo "appears destined for the same fate" as Perez, despite the team's unsettled second base situation.
  • Carlos Silva, Cubs: one year, $13.5MM.  The Cubs are only on the hook for $8MM to Silva this year, as they're receiving $5.5MM from Seattle.  The Cubs' last two rotation spots are too early to call, but if Silva continues to pitch poorly in his next few outings and isn't amenable to long relief, the Cubs might have to let him go.
  • Armando Galarraga, Diamondbacks: one year, $2.3MM.  The D'Backs would only be on the hook for roughly $380K if they release Galarraga by the 15th, whereas Zach Duke's salary is guaranteed.  If Aaron Heilman or Barry Enright makes the rotation, Galarraga or Duke would have to slide to the bullpen or be released.
  • Barry Zito, Giants: three years, $64.5MM.  Most teams would be thrilled with a low 4.00s ERA from their fifth starter, so the idea of releasing Zito was strange from the start.
  • Aaron Rowand, Giants: two years, $24MM.  The Giants have a crowded outfield, and cutting Rowand makes sense.  They've also got Nate Schierholtz, who is out of options.
  • Milton Bradley, Mariners: one year, $12MM.  Bradley's legal issues aside, Spring Training seems to be going well enough for him.  He's even playing center field today.  This one is hard to call right now.
  • Danys Baez, Phillies: one year, $2.75MM.  Baez had a rough first year for the Phillies, but he can probably squeeze his way onto the Opening Day roster.
  • Ryan Doumit, Pirates: one year, $5.6MM.  Doumit isn't generating much trade interest, but releasing him would be a last resort and probably won't be necessary prior to Opening Day.


73 Responses to Who Could Be Released This Month? Leave a Reply

  1. goredsgo 4 years ago

    there’s no way the D’Backs relase Galarraga in the position their in

    • No Neck 4 years ago

      What position is that?

    • ykw 4 years ago

      Sure, they could. Saving a cool two mil on a guy not likely to be much more than the club’s long man would be an excellent move for the club. Granted, the fact that it =would= be a good move is what makes it unlikely (see every other roster move of the DBacks’ offseason thus far), but the sheer quantity of low-cost potential starters the team has in camp this month puts it in =precisely= the position to cull the herd cheaply.

    • ejr 4 years ago

      I just can’t understand why anyone would give Aaron Heilman the ball. ever. Especially in a rebuilding phase. is he that cheap? compared to Galarraga?

      • ykw 4 years ago

        Heilman has displayed the capacity to be an effective eighth-inning guy and has the stuff to close if needed; even/especially if the Barry Enright production leaps past both Heilman and Galarraga, that makes Heilman far more valuable than Galarraga to keep around.

        Also, the fact that Heilman has a guaranteed FA contract while Galarraga has only a partial guarantee on his restricted-rights deal makes it much cheaper to dump Galarraga than to get rid of Heilman.

  2. alexchicago14 4 years ago

    jeez, i feel like that zito deal went down when i was still in middle school…three more years! wow

    • Gigantes2425 4 years ago

      Seriously. I would love for them to get something for him. It would be better to keep him as a 5th starter then release him.

      • If the yankees rotation struggles htis year I could def see them trading for zito, not really giving anything of value but eating a large portion of his salary.

        • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

          No way could I see that happening. The Yanks don’t need to trade for a #4 or #5 owed $60 mil. They need a #2 or #3 that can push AJ and Hughes further down the depth chart. Zito’s 4.00 + ERA would not transfer well to a hitter friendly park in the AL East.

          • They dont need to trade for it, doesnt mean they wont. I mean you say that now, but the bronx fans will be fuming if they are 10 back in june and be demanding something, especially if all they have to give up is money(which they have an endless supply).

            Trading for zito makes as much sense as giving 18 million bucks to a 40 year old declining ss.

      • Matt Talken 4 years ago

        I agree. Seems like someone would be willing to take him if they’d even pay half that contract.

        As it is, as someone being released, I bet the Cardinals would be happy to kick the tires on Zito for cheap, but I’m sure there’s gotta be someone out there that would be willing to pay at least 6-8M a year of that contract (not much, I know, but better than nothing) for a chance to see if Zito can still put up that low 4’s ERA for them.

      • ykw 4 years ago

        And keep in mind that he’s only a back-end starter =on= =that= =team=. Most clubs would be happy to slot him in as a three, and there are many places where he’d be a good option as a two. Two hundred dependable innings of ~4 ERA isn’t easy to find.

    • It is along time but i’m up in the air about zito and wouldnt mind giving him another season on the team. As for Rowand, Good bye!

    • 55saveslives 4 years ago

      Zito is going NOWHERE for the duration. Rowand MAYBE we can unload if we eat a ton of salary.

      • Whole_New_World 4 years ago

        Agreed, Zito is not being released. And no one is going to trade for him. Zito does not belong on this list. The Giants do not have better replacement (Don’t EVEN start with Suppan), his salary binds him to the Giants, and management has come out very publicly in support of Zito.

        Tim Dierkes, really with this? Silly, wild-assed guesses with no basis in reality? Even for the “I think (they) stand a chance of being cut this month” qualifier, this is weak.

        .

    • Truth is, there are some teams out there (Cardinals, Yankees) that are hurting for starters that might be willing to take Zito. Zito showed some great improvement at the beginning of 2010, only to crash and burn by season’s end.

      San Fran would be better trading him away, because at least then the Giants will only eat a portion of his salary rather than the whole thing if they release him. There are teams out there that need pitching, and Zito will look good to a few of them.

  3. Diehard Philsphan 4 years ago

    Let baez go already geez

  4. iheartyourfart 4 years ago

    most of those guys won’t be without a job for long if they are cut, assuming they are willing to sign for reasonable deals.

    • Chuck345 4 years ago

      Yeah, it has been mentioned that Oliver Perez has had a head-start submitting applications for a grocery bagger position.

  5. DaveP 4 years ago

    Strange that Doumit is on this list. While he is overpaid, he still retains value and is not a distraction.

    • DK_hits_20 4 years ago

      I agree. Sadly, he’s probably their 2nd best player behind McCutcheon.

      • yep he is better than pedro alvarez….

        • CaseyBlakeDeWitt 4 years ago

          And Walker and Tabata

          • jwsox 4 years ago

            it could be argued though that he is correct in saying he is the second best player. Now after this season he more than likely wont be, but Tabata, Walker, and Alvarez had yet to prove them selves.

          • Ian_Smell 4 years ago

            And James McDonald, oh wait…

          • Guest 4 years ago

            Yeah that is hysterical.

      • Todd Smith 4 years ago

        I’m not even sure he’s the 2nd best catcher.

        • DK_hits_20 4 years ago

          I never said Doumit was a great player, but releasing him is probably not the answer. Like it or not, he’s an experienced player who is capable of 15 home runs and 50 RBI’s, which would probably account for a significant portion of the Pirates offense this season, and like the original poster said, he’s not a distraction so what’s the point of releasing him?

          • Todd Smith 4 years ago

            If Doumit isn’t traded during the season, the Pirates will not pick up his option and let him go at the end of the year anyway. I’d rather take a chance with a guy like John Bowker off the bench than Doumit. If Doumit takes that spot, then Bowker is likely gone as he is out of options.

    • TNThunder 4 years ago

      Obviously, you haven’t watched Doumit catch recently.

    • mrsjohnmiltonrocks 4 years ago

      It would probably a good career move for Doumit to get out of Pittsburgh, but I can’t see him being flat out released. He does have some skills. Someone would put him to use, even if only part time, and be willing to take on at least some of his salary.

      Now, if you want to ask me if he’s overpaid, that’s another discussion.

  6. j6takish 4 years ago

    I hope the Tigers claim Raga back if he gets released

  7. jakec77 4 years ago

    You would think there would be some sort of trade possibilities on that list.

    How about Castillo and Perez for Rowand, Zito, with the Giants kicking in a chunk of cash. The Mets could actually lower this year’s payroll (if the Giants money is upfront), although they would be taking on commitments for the next two season. Still, that is at least a short term help with any cash crisis for this season, buys time to sell part of the team, plus, they actually get a couple of overpaid, but more useful players than the one’s they are sending the other way.

    From the Giants perspective, this only works if they are truly considering releasing Rowand and Zito and eating the $88 million over the next three years they are owed. Instead, even assuming they just release Castillo and Perez (pretty good chance), that’s just $18 million, plus for argument’s sake let’s say another $20 million. Instead of eathing $88 million, they eat $38 million.

    Hell, when I put it that way, makes me think the Mets should demand that Baumgartner be thrown into the deal. :)

    • jwsox 4 years ago

      why would the giants trade two players who have actual value and can actually play at a semi high level in the bigs. Zito had a 2.1 WAR last season and rowand had a .5 WAR but a 2.5 the season before where as Perez had a -1.1 WAR castillo had a .6 WAR in only have a season(rowand at least had the .5 in a full season) 07 was the last time luis had a WAR over 2.0…

      so the giants two guys have a combined had a 2.6 WAS where as the Mets have a combined -1.5 WAR that trade only makes sence for the Mets….if the mets throw chase San Frans way maybe do it but still not point to it

      • jakec77 4 years ago

        Again, I repeat, this is only if the Giants are planning on releasing Rowand and Zito, and the Mets are planning on releasing Perez and Castillo (in which case, hard to do the math off the top of my head, but I believe that would mean each player would have a WAR of ZERO). Otherwise, to some degree it makes no sense, BUT, consider this:

        Lets’ use my proposal from above, with the $20 million going from the Giants to the Mets in cash, which obviously appalls you from your analysis. I’ll go with your analysis, and assume the same numbers this year as last- so, 2.6 WAR to the Mets, to a -1.5 WAR to the Giants, for a difference of 4.1. HOWEVER- as I put in my post, I pretty much assume the Giants release both Perez and Castillo. So really, the difference is just the 2.6 WAR the Mets gain from the Giants.
        Now, look at how payrolls are effected. For 2011, the Giants subtract $30 million, add $18 million, plus pay the Mets $20 million upfront. So, the Giants actually are out $8 million more in payroll in 2011, and the Mets lower their payroll by the same amount. Clearly, for 2011, the Mets make out like bandits. But, in 2012, the Giants payroll is again down the $30 million, without any additions, while the Mets take on that same $30 million. Then, in 2013, the Giants subtract $18 million, which is added to the Mets.

        So, the question then is, if you are the Giants, would you add the $ 8 million in payroll for this year, lose out on whatever Zito and Rowand would have given you compared to whoever actually replaces them on your team, but gain $30 million payroll in 2012 (Pujols, anyone?), and $18 million in 2013.

        I don’t think that’s necessarily ridiculous at all.

        In fact, from a strict baseball standpoint, I wouldn’t do it if I were the Mets. Better to take their lumps this year, get rid of a bunch of contracts at the end of this year, and spend the next couple of years rebuilding the organization. But, that doesn’t figure in two issues- the Mets apparent cash flow issues, and the need to sell tickets. Getting the $20 million from the Giants helps with the first; adding the two players (particularly Zito) should help the Mets win a couple of extra games, but more importantly sends a message to the fan base that the Mets are going to try and win those games.

        Anyway, you clearly disagree, I just think you didn’t factor in the salary implications in your analysis.

        • jwsox 4 years ago

          I understand about the money aspect I get what you are saying. yes this deal means the giants only lose 8 mill this season as opposed to 68+ mill and from the mets aspect they get to add some peices that might help Zito might benifit from changing places and going to an extreme pitchers park. Rowand could possibly get a chance to start given beltrans recent injuries.

          But consider this why would the Giants want to move a 2.0 WAR 5th starter(thats one of if not the best WAR a 5th starter can post). He is a perfect innings easter which is exactly what Gm’s need out of the 5th spot. Yes he is paid like an ace but thats not his fault thats the GM’s fault. I just dont see the point in trading away both him and Rowand. I know the giants fans hate how much zito is paid but he is still a pitcher who can go out there on any given day and throw a shut out(yes there are days where he gets shelled) But its the GM’s fault he is paid as highly as he is, from a sole baseball stand point the team is better with zito and his contract than without. From a business stand point the team is better without his contract, it will be interesting to see what stance the GM takes.

          As for rowand he is still a capable outfielder who can field and still hit enough to get a starting spot somewhere. And with the uncertainty of Burrel(we all saw how he was before coming to the giants) and the almost guarantee of an injury from derosa it almost does not make sense from a depth stand point to trade him unless they moved burrel as well and moved huff to left and brought up that stud 1st base prospect.

        • there 2 mets on this list n a exmet

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      Why would the Mets, who can finally see the light of day from getting fromup under 2 bad contracts and who are currently strapped for cash, want to take on 2 players, who are at best, mlb average level replacement players due another $69 mil after 2011 (Zito has a very obtainable option)?

      Just thinking of that trade gives me visions of Ving Rhames being bent over the table with the red ball in his mouth, but instead of Ving’s face I see that of Sandy Alderson saying (in a muffled voice) “Thank you Sabean can I have another one”?

      • Slopeboy 4 years ago

        As always Dude, you come prepared with facts and/or the correct analogies. I was thinking the same thing about Zito and that trade. The Ving Rhames part, not so much, but it is a hilarious thought. Good Job!

  8. Bumgarner, really, that’s comedy! I like the rest of the deal though man.

    • jakec77 4 years ago

      I was (I thought obviously) joking about Bumgarner, but I was trying to make a point (which I elaborated in great detail above) that a deal of Zito, Rowand, and $20 million for Perez and Castillo was actually not nearly as one sided towards the Mets as it might appear.

      Although, it probably could be done simpler than that, just building around Perez, Castillo for Zito. Giants release Perez and Castillo, essentially they just dump Zito while paying 1/3 of his contract. I wouldn’t do that if I’m the Mets, the benefit of adding Zito, essentially for free, to the 2011 team does not sufficiently compensate for being stuck with him at full salary for 2012 and 2013, unless you believe that Zito can somehow turn things around and suddenly become someone another team would look at trading for next offseason at 2 years and $36 million.

  9. Guest 4 years ago

    If the Giants pay 32-37 million of Zito’s contract, he could be traded…

    • jwsox 4 years ago

      hell yeah he could there would be a ton of teams that would take a 2 WAR pitcher with a solid ERA and only pay half his salary

      • ykw 4 years ago

        It’d have to be closer to two-thirds or even three-quarters of his salary. Nobody (unless Arte Moreno is answering the phones again) is gonna pick up Zito at $11-12M per for three more years. $6-7M, though? Oh, yeah, There’d be about twenty GMs taking numbers and waiting in line.

        I just dunno why the Giants would =want= to do such a thing.

  10. twenty1thirteen 4 years ago

    Jeff Francoeur and Melky Cabrera!

  11. mgsports 4 years ago

    That’s a great Trade for Mets because need another Bat and SP.
    Ryan D. Padres or Astros?

  12. rainyperez 4 years ago

    Three team trade involving the Phillies, Giants, and third team I’m still thinking about. You would send Rowand to the Phillies while they trade Blanton to another team and Giants get a B Prospect or player to be named later from the third team and or the Phillies. Thoughts?

    • rainyperez 4 years ago

      Giants would eat most of Rowands salary

    • jwsox 4 years ago

      nope, there has been a few articles out there today that state that the phillies literally cant afford anyone else

  13. Milton Bradley is not going to be released. He’s an extremely overlooked bounce back candidate and I’m pretty sure the M’s brass are some of the only people who have noticed. It really wouldn’t be too surprising to see him come back from the injuries that derailed his 2010 and produce a little closer to his career numbers, thusly more than earning a bench spot (or a larger role if Michael Saunders or Jack Cust get injured or fall off a cliff).

    If released, Bradley would still be collecting massive checks from the Mariners while potentially providing value to another club. That would make the Mariners look dumb. The Mariners looking dumb could result in the Mariners firing the front office and setting themselves back a couple years. While he certainly could play awfully and be released this year, I’d be shocked if it occurred during spring training.

    • gunsnascar 4 years ago

      That was a thoughtful well written comment.
      I dont know how well you follow what milton bradley has done in his career inside and outside the lines ,but milton bradley is a total piece of crap as a baseball player, as a team mate, and as a human being. So why would you wish the M’s to keep that club house cancer.
      1 milton bradley will not have a bounce back year ( he is washed up)
      2 the M’s would be better trying someone from triple A as their bench player / pinch hitter
      3 what the heck has bradley done now with reguards to the law
      4 whatever it is it reflects badly on baseball AND the M’s

    • jwsox 4 years ago

      He has been an “extremely overlooked bounce back candidate” for years now. the trade that brought him to Seattle was supposed to be that bounce back/change of scenery. And his year last year was horrible. He should be released or even try to trade him, even if it means eating a ton of his contract. He does not deserve to be on a baseball field with his antics. The “whole everyone is against me” “everyone else is bad except for me” “the refs are mean to me because I’m black” and all the other crap he has said throughout his career to deflect from the fact that he is largely average, if that.

      “If released, Bradley would still be collecting massive checks from the Mariners while potentially providing value to another club” this could be true but with the way he acts now and has always act I highly doubt anyone takes a flier out on him and with his most recent slip up (the divorce where his soon to be ex is saying he was violent towards her) he probably wont be in baseball. Also he may receive massive checks from the M’s but it would take a horrible club house guy away and allow more young guys to get more playing time which would benefit the club more in the long run. Also with his ego he would probably demand a big check from his new team too

      “That would make the Mariners look dumb. The Mariners looking dumb could result in the Mariners firing the front office and setting themselves back a couple years. While he certainly could play awfully and be released this year, I’d be shocked if it occurred during spring training. “……you do realize that you are talking about milton bradley right? he is not an all star or anything special he didnt even play half a season last year with a .205/ .292/. .348 slash line , producing a -.1 WAR,which is bad and the year before with the cubs he produced a .257/.292/.348 slash line with a 1.1 WAR oh also a -73 UZR for the m’s in right and a total OF uzr of .6 again nothing special at all. Dont over value milton bradley at all

      • The thing you have to remember is that although Milton Bradley is not expected to contribute this year, it is physically possible that he could. That’s the point in bringing him to spring training and not releasing him as soon as he was arrested a few weeks ago. In the first week of spring training he has proven himself physically capable of playing baseball, which is something he had a hard time proving last year. Of course he’s not an all-star but he was a valuable bat in 2008 and that was recent enough that we should be inclined to believe that his 2010 numbers were at least caused by injuries.

        yes, he’s time and time again proven to the world that he is batshit insane. yes, he’s a proven clubhouse cancer. yes he was a part of the most disappointing baseball team seattle has ever witnessed. these things we know to be true. We don’t know that he is so finished that he can’t be a useful bench player when healthy, which is why the mariners are most likely going to give him longer than the month of march to prove that he has a healthy, productive bone left in his body. a hitter’s a hitter even if he’s a stupid jerk.

    • Slopeboy 4 years ago

      Thank you for those kind words Dr. Schwabacher, I will see you next Thursday at the usual time for my therapy session.

      – Signed Milton B.

    • The M’s have looked dumb a lot lately haven’t they? Hopefully this year will be different. I agree w/you that Bradley will not be released. He is such a wildcard though. I’m thinking he’s going to have a great year.

  14. jakec77 4 years ago

    Interesting… really depends, how bad do the Phillies want to unload Joe Blanton’s contract? They are really getting much in the deal other than that financial flexibility.

    For the Giants, only makes sense if they are truly considering just dropping Rowand.

    For the 3rd team- they essentially just get Blanton, at full salary. Obviously, depends who the 3rd team is, but that’s not a bad thing overall.

  15. kräftig. entschieden 4 years ago

    Also, Nyjer Morgan is 1-for-the-spring.

  16. I would say Perez and Bradley are the most likely.

    • Slopeboy 4 years ago

      Perez pitched earlier today, and while it was not a disaster, it was not a smooth outting by any means. Collins and Alderson are to meet tomorrow morning to ‘discuss the results’. Looks as if they are planning on how to frame the announcement that Perez is gone.

  17. BillB325 4 years ago

    Zito for Soriano…… in my dreams

  18. BillB325 4 years ago

    and silva

  19. jwsox 4 years ago

    does not make sense for the giants it adds yet another OF to their already crowded out field. possibly zito for big Z

    • YanksFanSince78 4 years ago

      So trade a decent/good starting pitcher making a lot of money ($56 mil) for an average, sometimes below average pitcher making even more ($63 mil w/o the option and $75 mil if it vests)? How does that benefit the Cubs? Plus both players have no-trade clauses and seem to like where they are.

    • gunsnascar 4 years ago

      are you stoned
      Z has some good value still and zito is far from #1 starter preformance ( and im not saying Z is a #1 either ) but your suggestion is insane

  20. davinci24 4 years ago

    please add mark teahen to this list. he must go!

    • mistermonkey 4 years ago

      Ditto Carlos Guillen. $13M for what will probably be 50 games and 50 hamstring tweaks.

  21. northsfbay 4 years ago

    Zito and Rowand aren’t going anywhere. I don’t know why they are on this list.

  22. CaseyBlakeDeWitt 4 years ago

    Who cares about such a minor mistake when you’re commenting about baseball on the internet..

  23. wickedkevin 4 years ago

    Hey, the guy is “angry3.” I can only assume he has three times the anger. To be fair, our friend “angry3″ left out the necessary quotations around his words of example.

  24. The yankees throw money around and the pressure from the fans is the greatest in probably any sport.

    If zito gets off to the start he did last year and the yankees struggle yes I could def see them doing it.

  25. CaseyBlakeDeWitt 4 years ago

    Disqus just notified me that you have replied to my previous comment here.

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