TODAY: Barney would earn $1.25MM in the majors, Jon Heyman of Fan Rag tweets, with an additional $500K of potential incentive pay. His contract also includes an opt-out opportunity on March 24th.
YESTERDAY: The Rangers announced that they’ve signed veteran infielder Darwin Barney to a minor league contract with an invitation to Major League Spring Training. He’s represented by CAA Baseball.
Barney, 32, has spent the past two seasons with the Blue Jays and seen quite a bit of action at the middle infield positions following frequent injuries to Devon Travis and Troy Tulowitzki. The slick-fielding Barney has totaled +7 Defensive Runs Saved and a +8.8 Ultimate Zone Rating in 383 innings of shortstop action over the course of his big league career, and those same metrics are even more bullish on his work at second base (+53, +37.3 in 5113 innings). His prowess at second base earned him an NL Gold Glove with the Cubs back in 2012 when he was the primary second baseman in Chicago.
However, for all of his defensive accolades, Barney doesn’t bring much to the table in terms of offensive firepower. In 694 plate appearances with the Jays, he posted an anemic .251/.298/.357 batting line — numbers that only slightly outpace his career .246/.294/.341 slash through 2759 plate appearances.
With the Rangers, he’ll compete for a utility infield job, though he’ll have an uphill battle to climb in that regard as things currently stand. At present, the Rangers figure to have Adrian Beltre, Elvis Andrus and Rougned Odor starting at third base, shortstop and second base, respectively, with the out-of-options Jurickson Profar penciled in for the utility spot. Since Profar can’t be sent to the minors without first being exposed to waivers (where he’d obviously be claimed by another club), there isn’t exactly a clear path to even semi-regular at-bats for Barney (barring an injury or a trade). But, he’ll give the Rangers a nice depth option in camp and possibly in Triple-A early in the year.
It’s not a given that he’ll head to Triple-A Round Rock even if he doesn’t make the team, though; many veterans of this nature will negotiate the right to ask for their release during Spring Training into their contract. And, as an Article XX (B) free agent that signed a minor league contract, he’d be owed a $100K retention bonus at the end of Spring Training if the Rangers did elect to keep him around.
And they say teams aren’t signing anyone.
Clearing the way to trade Jurickson while his value is non-existent? Nah, probably just minor-league depth.
Nice defense. Always enjoyed watching him play in Chicago. Hope he can make his way back to the majors.
Darwin “I only play for teams with blue in their uniforms” Barney
You’d think he’d be more inclined to go somewhere with purple in their uniforms…
True! But then again blue jays and rangers both wear red tops occasionally as well.. hmm maybe only teams with blue and red? Cubs count too!
Cubs,Dodgers, blue jays and rangers. All have red white and blue. He’s only has the Nats with those colors.
they should let Odur DH , Profar play 2B therefore Barney can be a reserve
So many things wrong with this comment
Then what do you do with a Choo (who is a better hitter than everyone you mentioned)
Obviously, you trade Choo and some magic beans to the Angels for Trout and Ohtani.
If the Angels are getting magic beans, they would clearly have to give a prospect to even the deal out.
Odor was horrible with the bat last year. He batted just barely above .200, and had a negative WAR. He wouldn’t make much sense at DH, mainly due to the likes of Choo, Calhoun, etc…
Profar is a good insurance piece. Despite his anemic results, the Rangers have to be prepared for Elvis to leave next offseason. Profar might not be the player who anyone wants replacing Elvis, but he is at least a backup plan.
I see this move serving more of a role for the trade deadline. I won’t be surprised to see the likes of Elvis, Hammels, Beltre, etc… all made available at the break. If Elvis is in fact traded, Barney could see some major time the back half of the season.
When Odor punches Bautista two years ago, he inherited his batting avg.
But clearly Odor didn’t inherit how to win in the clutch.
He’s a really good defensive player. Impressed at his numbers. +53 DRS, +37.3 UZR in 5113 Innings at 2B, is something else.
And only 32? Not too bad.
Too bad he hits like a pitcher,
I know Odor hits homers and steals bases but, honestly, how long can you run a guy out there with a .252 OBP? I don’t watch the Rangers and the defensive numbers are all over the place with him, but the guy doesn’t appear to be much of an asset. I understand he is young but he’s gotten worse each year in the majors
Some players think taking a walk, is blasphemy, in their hitting approach. Odor had 32 walks in 607 at-bats.
If he could fix this, he would be a considerably better player, despite the .204 BA in 2017.
Odor has age on his side, Literally just turned 24.
Yeah; historically players who start out with a bad approach at the plate never really improve it, so maybe if he just has a BABIP regression back to a 250/300/400 line he’ll be okay.
His defensive numbers look like he gets to a lot more balls than the average second baseman but he also makes a ton of errors (led the league in 2B errors three years in a row). I thought Calhoun, who they acquired in the Darvish deal, was a 2B as well, so perhaps Odor is just a stopgap. But yeah, if you’re only getting on base 25% of the time, even with 30 homers, teams are eventually going to start looking elsewhere.
It sounds like Calhoun will be used out in LF.
I think Odor signed a 5 year deal last year. I could be wrong but that sounds right. I don’t think JD was using him as a stop-gap, but I sure wish he wouldn’t have gotten that contract when he did.
If Odor is anything like Andrus, he won’t peak until the final year or so of his contract.
That is the new trend in sports. Peak just prior to your walk year. Sign a big contract, then regress back to your historical averages.
Good luck to you, Darwin! Enjoyed your glove here with the Jays!
Darwin Barney gets a minor league deal, but not Mike Moustakas?
I’m going to take the bait… Why doesn’t Moose get a major league deal?
I know you’re a troll I just want to see what you possibly have cooked up for this one.
Not sure I see what you did there.
What a steal. Gardenhire wants Barney back to help with his new plans he and his wife have for outfield. Texas got him for nothing and can get make hay out of this when the Tigers come a calling and want him for dirt cheap only to be surprised!!
The Heyward contract got me confused. So teams are not paying for defense now?
Boring boring boring
I thought Beltre retired?????