Out Of Options Players: NL Central

The following 40-man roster players have less than five years service time and are out of minor league options.  That means they must clear waivers before being sent to the minors, so the team would be at risk of losing them in attempting to do so.  I've included players on multiyear deals.  This list was compiled through MLBTR's sources.  Today, we'll take a look at the NL Central.

Brewers: Juan FranciscoJeff Bianchi

Francisco is competing with Mark Reynolds and Lyle Overbay for the Brewers' first base job.  It's hard to imagine a scenario where all three make the team, wrote Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel last week.  Reynolds and Overbay signed minor league deals, but it seems likely at least one of them will make the team.  When Reynolds signed in January, it was said the Brewers told him he'll almost certainly make the team, so Overbay might have to beat out Francisco, who has the advantage of already being on the 40-man roster.

Back in February, Curt Hogg of Disciples of Uecker dissected the Brewers' reserve infielder situation, explaining that while they may need to carry seven infielders, Bianchi still seems needed as the only one capable of backing up Jean Segura at shortstop.

Cardinals: None

CubsGeorge KottarasWesley WrightJustin RuggianoJames McDonaldPedro StropWelington CastilloJeff SamardzijaLuis ValbuenaTravis WoodDonnie MurphyAlberto Cabrera

McDonald is competing with Chris Rusin for the Cubs' fifth starter job, at least until Jake Arrieta's shoulder is deemed ready.  Meanwhile, Cabrera is battling for the final bullpen spot with about a half-dozen others.

PiratesChris StewartJeanmar GomezMark MelanconTravis SniderJose TabataBryan MorrisAndy OliverStolmy PimentelPedro AlvarezVin Mazzaro

The Bucs' seven primary relievers last year were Jason Grilli, Melancon, Justin WilsonTony Watson, Gomez, Mazzaro, and Morris, and indeed, that was their bullpen for the NLDS.  It would be difficult for Oliver to break into that group, but surely the Pirates don't want to lose the hard-throwing Pimentel.  Tim Williams of Pirates Prospects thinks they'll find a place for him.  Some kind of trade makes sense to clear the logjam, barring injury.

RedsAlfredo Simon

Simon is in good standing as a member of the Reds' pen.


17 Responses to Out Of Options Players: NL Central Leave a Reply

  1. WrigleyTerror37 1 year ago

    correct me if im wrong but isn’t Josh Vitters out of options for the Cubs as well?

  2. Bertin Lefkovic 1 year ago

    Eduardo Nunez for Juan Francisco?

    • Mil8Ball 1 year ago

      If Fransisco were to not make the team its an interesting deal. Nunez would provide a slight improvement over Bianchi…but I expect Fransisco to make the team with Reynolds.

      • Daniel Morairity 1 year ago

        Why cant overbay make the team

        • Mil8Ball 1 year ago

          Because he is on a minor league deal. If Fransisco does well in the spring might as well give him the spot and make further decision if/when Overbays opt out is.

          If his opt out is right after spring training is done then its a tough choice.

          • Daniel Morairity 1 year ago

            ok lets say that overbay doesnt make the roster cant the rangers sign him

          • Mil8Ball 1 year ago

            Well according to a nice new article on MLBTR it looks like they can pay 100k to retain him in the minors…giving them continued control till a June 1st opt out.

  3. Tigers72 1 year ago

    Lennerton for Andy Oliver as a Lefty option for the Tigers and a high risk Mid to High reward SP prospect or good relief prospect. Also it’s amazing after all of last years injuries the Cards have no one with no more options.

  4. connfyoozed . 1 year ago

    A lot of Pittsburgh media types seem to think that Stolmy Pimentel is a better bet to head north with the Bucs than Andy Oliver: they really want to see what they have in Stolmy. If either or neither make the team, the Bucs will likely have to work out something to avoid losing either (or both?) through waivers. If I had a guess, the Bucs will be calling around seeking to deal Bryan Morris as part of a deal for a lefty 1B (Carp?)

  5. Shane Flannagan 1 year ago

    Right now I would bet that McDonald and Rusin both don’t win the 5th starter spot. I think with Arrieta out, its Kyle Hendricks to lose

    • fumf 1 year ago

      Hendricks to lose? Far from it. Hendricks may be better than all the 5th starter options and eventually better than the Cubs current #3, Jackson and #4, Hammel. But he’s 24 and because McDonald is out of options my guess he’ll get the first crack. I imagine we’ll see McDonald, Rusin, Arrieta, Villanueva, and probably Hendricks by season’s end in at #5. I’d kinda like to see Justin Grimm get a chance too…and Jokisch has looked good as well. Basically, it doesn’t really matter who they throw out their first because you’d have to figure lots of guys will get to audition this year.

  6. Kenz aFan 1 year ago

    When will we see a complete list of players out of options, like we did last year?

  7. Joe Orsatti 1 year ago

    Brent Morel? I’m not sure, I’m just wondering

  8. Steve Rosenquist 1 year ago

    Brewer would be crazy the keep Overbay over Fransisco. Reynolds is gone.

  9. John Lembcke 5 months ago

    Pete Kozma of the Cards is out of options I believe.

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