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Vesting Options Update

Back in February, I looked at vesting options from 2010, 2011, and 2012 to try and find out how often they were triggered over that span.  In total, just over 29% of vesting options were locked in for the following season.  If you think that's a low success rate for vesting options, just wait until you see this year's crop.  As the 2013 regular season winds down, we've got a pretty concrete idea of who has managed to successfully tack on additional year to their contract and who hasn't..

  • Kurt Suzuki, Athletics: $9.25MM option vests with 113 starts in 2013.  Suzuki looked like he'd have a solid chance of securing his 2014 option early in the season as Wilson Ramos struggled to stay healthy, but the younger backstop ultimately returned to reclaim his starting job.  The 29-year-old was eventually traded back to Oakland without enough time on the clock to hit 113.  Now, it's a club option for next season worth $8.5MM with a modest $650K buyout.
  • Jamey Carroll, Royals: $2MM option vests with 401 plate appearances.  Carroll surpassed that total in each of the last three seasons and even had 500+ plate appearances in 2011 and 2012, but he had significantly less this season.  With 191 PAs for the Twins and 31 for the Royals, he barely cleared the halfway mark.
  • Koji Uehara, Red Sox: Uehara's contract was originally reported to be a one-year deal worth $4.25MM, but Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe and Alex Speier of WEEI learned last month that his deal contained a vesting option that would give him $4.25MM for next season with 55 appearances.  The veteran reached that goal on August 13th and just last night, he finished his 35th game of the season, boosting his '14 salary to a cool $5MM.  
  • Wilson Betemit, Orioles: $3.2MM option vests with 324 plate appearances (combined 700 between 2012 and 2013). Betemit underwent arthroscopic knee surgery on March 26th and just got back to big league action in late August.  Needless to say, his option won't vest.
  • Lance Berkman, Rangers: $13MM option vests with 550 plate appearances.  Injuries derailed Berkman's campaign once again in 2013 and he has just 70 games and 288 PAs to date.  Berkman was thinking about quitting mid-season rather than returning, so it wouldn't be a shock to see him retire after this season.
  • Roy Halladay, Phillies: $20MM option vests with 259 innings pitched (combined 415 innings pitched between '12 and '13).  This was a longshot to begin with, but shoulder surgery earlier this season makes this one impossible.
  • Brett Myers, Indians: $8MM option vests with 200 innings pitched in 2013 and a passed physical after the season.  After logging 21 and 1/3 innings in 2013, Myers was sidelined with tendinitis and a mild ligament sprain in his right elbow and was eventually cut loose.
  • Barry Zito, Giants: $18MM option vests with 200 innings pitched. Zito has just 128 innings through 24 starts and four relief outings to his credit this season, so he won't get to lock in his sizable 2014 salary.
  • Johan Santana, Mets: His $25MM option could have vested with 215 innings pitched or winning the 2013 Cy Young Award, but he won't have a chance at that thanks to a season-ending tear in his pitching shoulder.
  • Francisco Liriano, Pirates: The nature of Liriano's contract with the Pirates was shrouded in secrecy, but our own Steve Adams got the goods last month.  The left-hander's 2014 option ($5MM) officially vested when he reached 90 days not spent on the DL due to the right arm injury. Now, he' s increased that number to $6MM after reaching 120 games on Saturday, Sept. 7.  He could have reached $8MM for 2014 with a total of 150 games, but he spent too much time on the sidelines to have that opportunity. 


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