Recently released Marlins right-hander Dan Straily has received big league offers from three American League teams, per MLB Network’s Jon Heyman (Twitter link). Some clubs have been willing to promise a rotation spot to the 30-year-old Straily, who’ll take the next week or so to mull those and any other offers that arise with his family and his representatives.
Miami’s decision to release Straily registered as somewhat of a surprise. Miami had reportedly sought to trade Straily for much of the offseason but found no takers at his $5MM price point, it seems. Rather than opening the season with the 30-year-old holding down a starting job and then looking for early opportunities to move him, the Fish instead simply opted to cut Straily loose, eating about $1.21MM of his non-guaranteed arbitration salary in the process. Straily will take home that salary no matter what, and he’ll earn whatever sum a new organization is willing to pay him on top of that figure.
Straily struggled through a rough spring but has generally been a solid back-of-the-rotation arm for the Reds and Marlins across the past three seasons, pitching to a combined 4.03 ERA with 7.8 K/9, 3.4 BB/9 and 1.5 HR/9 in 495 1/3 innings. He’s an extreme fly-ball pitcher, which has led to frequent issues with the long ball, but Straily typically misses bats at an average or better rate and also generates a large number of infield flies.
Several teams throughout the American League could speculatively make sense for Straily. The Athletics are piecing things together at the back of their rotation, while the Angels have been perennially clobbered by injuries and are currently uncertain about the status of Andrew Heaney’s elbow. A rebuilding club like the Orioles could easily accommodate Straily, though he may prefer to head to a club with at least some semblance of postseason aspirations now that he’s choosing his destination. There are, of course, numerous clubs in the National League who could benefit from swapping out Straily for their current fifth option as well.
When Straily does sign, he’ll be an option not only for the remainder of the 2019 season but also the 2020 campaign. Because he has four years, 126 days of big league service time under his belt, Straily won’t qualify as a free agent at season’s end and would be controllable for another season via the arbitration process.