The Rays are expected to receive a fourth option year on left-hander/first baseman Brendan McKay, reports Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. If that indeed proves to be the case, Tampa Bay would be able to option McKay to the minor leagues through the end of next season.
Most players can be optioned for three seasons. After a team exhausts those option years, they have to keep a player on the active roster or remove him from the 40-man roster entirely (thereby allowing other clubs an opportunity to trade for or claim that player off waivers). However, for players who have accrued fewer than five full professional seasons — defined as years with at least ninety days on a major league or minor league active roster — teams may be granted a fourth option year.
Fourth options most often come into play for players who have missed a significant amount of time in their careers on account of injuries. McKay is no exception, as he has barely pitched at any level over the past two seasons. After missing all of 2020 and the first half of this season recovering from shoulder surgery, the southpaw suffered a flexor strain in August that ended his 2021 campaign after just seven minor league outings.
More from the American League:
- The 2021 season was a disappointment for Angels star Anthony Rendon, who was held to 249 plate appearances by three separate injuries. His season came to a close in early August, when he underwent surgery to repair a right hip impingement. Fortunately, it doesn’t seem that injury is expected to carry over into next season, as Rendon told Grant Paulsen and Kevin Frandsen of MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM (Twitter link) this afternoon that he intends to be ready for Spring Training. “That’s the gameplan,” Rendon said. “That was what kind of pushed us to get the surgery done sooner than later. We were dealing with it for the entire year, trying to figure out what was going on and figure out the best way to approach it. … Once we knew where we stood in the standings and whatnot, we needed to knock it out so I could have an entire offseason to be able to get ready for Spring Training. That’s the goal.” The ongoing issues with his hip could certainly offer an explanation for Rendon’s downturn in production. The typically-excellent hitter posted a slightly below-average .240/.329/.382 line, the worst showing of his career at the plate.
- For the first time in a decade, the Mariners will enter an offseason with some uncertainty at the hot corner. With the club set to buy out longtime third baseman Kyle Seager, Seattle could look to address the position outside the organization. Corey Brock of the Athletic explores the various possibilities, ranging from internal options like Ty France and Abraham Toro to a big-ticket free agent pursuit. Mariners president of baseball operations Jerry Dipoto has spoken a few times about the team’s ability and desire to make some meaningful upgrades to the roster on the free agent market. Dipoto voiced a specific preference for “adaptable” players who have shown an ability to move around the diamond. Kris Bryant and Chris Taylor — each of whom Brock suggests as a speculative possibility for the M’s to target this winter — both have demonstrated the capacity to bounce between multiple positions, including third base.
A lot of commenters on here should bookmark this page because many of them don’t understand how the option process works
The Mets "Missed WAR"
I hope McKay can finally stay healthy. This game needs more good 2-way stars. They are so fun to watch. I hope Rendon really does get back to his usual self after the surgery too. The Mariners definitely need to start Toro somewhere even if they add another 3rd baseman. The Seattle fans who didn’t like trading 2 months of Graveman for over 5 years of Toro don’t know what’s best for their team. Toro seems like he is going to be a very good player for a long time. Now they can still sign Graveman back if they really want to. Toro was always going to help that team more than any reliever even if that reliever is Graveman.
I agree 100%. Teams like Seattle cannot afford to play for one season. Toro chilled out after a hot start, but 4.2 seasons of Toro is likely to be worth a good bit more than .2 seasons of Graveman. And given that Steck pretty much ran the table as the new closer, I don’t think they lost anything.
Having said that, it is difficult to find a better name for a closer than Graveman.
Except there’s much more to the story in the Toro/ Graveman trade than the simple fact that the trade is 5 years of a young prospect for 2 months of a lockdown high leverage RP. For ex: how much would it mean to the fans of Seattle if the team actually broke the 20 year playoff drought last season? How much is that really worth to the fans? Its now common knowledge the M’s were trying to make a deal for Kris Bryant at the deadline- if they were able to land K Bryant how many Wins would that be worth? We just saw ATL win the WS with timely hitting, 2 hot starters and 3 high leverage RP’s. Besides- who is Toro? Is he the player we saw in August or is he the guy we saw in Sept? As I say- it’s a much more complex issue than just 5 yrs vs 2 months.
Indeed it’s more complex than five years versus two months.
In the two months after the trade Kendall Graveman posted a 3.13 ERA and 0.3 fWAR in 23 appearances with Houston while veteran reliever Joe Smith posted an ERA of 2.00 and 0.5 fWAR in 23 appearances with Seattle.
There is an argument to be made that Seattle was a better team after the trade than before the trade. They were 34-23. Toro was worth 0.9 bWAR. Smith, as Muskie points out, had a 0.7 WAR. Graveman had only a 0.5 with Houston, and Steckenrider was 2-0, with 11 saves and -0- blown saves, and a 1.63 ERA in August & September.
It is just about impossible to think that Seattle would’ve performed better without the trade.
The only thing that’s impossible in this question of would Seattle win more games without the trade is comparing apples to apples. You can’t compare, nor will you ever know.
But let me try anyway! One can see Seattle performing better w/o a change to their BP and clubhouse chemistry- 1) they had a favorable schedule in the months following the trade. They were almost certainly going to have a good record over those last 2 months. What was it? The 3rd easiest SOS in the League? 2nd easiest? Whatever it was, the favorable 2nd half schedule was one of the multiple reasons Seattle should be buyers leading up to the trade.
2) Seattle blew multiple leads/saves in the 2-3 weeks immediately after the trade. I can think of 5 games we lost that almost certainly would’ve been Wins with our Pre Deadline BP.
3) When you discuss Smith’s 0.7 WAR contribution you’re forgetting about the value of Graveman AND JT Chargois in our BP.
4) You can’t compare Graveman’s WAR in HOU when he would’ve been used in Seattle more: plus the M’s played in a larger number of tight ballgames, the HOU lineup blew more teams out and he was utilized differently- used in the 8th inn instead of the 9th inn.
Finally, you saw how Sewald tired down the stretch- that was a direct result of being overused due to the Graveman and JT Chargois departures. Think about the talent in the back end of that BP: Graveman was almost unhittable up to that point, but before you even got to Graveman hitters would have to face Chargois, Sadler, Steckenrider, Sewald then KG.
Their schedule was slightly unfavorable in the final two months. The winning % of their opponents was .494, but that was way outweighed by the fact that 32 of their final 57 were on the road.
Graveman & Chargois threw 63 innings for Seattle. Extrapolating that to the two remaining months, that means they’d have thrown 31.5 innings. Their replacements, Castillo & Smith, threw 40 innings. So Sewald definitely didn’t throw more innings because Castillo & Smith threw 40 innings.
Again, there is no evidence to suggest that Seattle would’ve played any better. There are always ‘what ifs’, but they played better after the trades, and the players they acquired played better than the players they gave up.
The Mets "Missed WAR"
IMO Seattle was a better team with Toro than Graveman. A good hitting starting position player is almost always more valuable than a reliever. I wouldn’t worry if Toro cooled off later in the season. Toro is the player he was throughout the minors and majors with the Astros. He has hit at every single level. Look at how he has done his whole career and not just the last month or 2 of the season. After the trade Toro earned almost twice as much WAR as Graveman. There is no reason to believe Graveman would have helped the Mariners make the playoffs more than Toro. There is every reason to believe Toro will help them make the playoffs in the future more than Graveman. It’s definitely not all just about 5 years vs. 2 months. It’s more about the fact that Toro is already just a more productive baseball player than Graveman. Seattle robbed the Astros blind in that deal. It was almost as bad as what the White Sox gave up for Kimbrel. Maybe even worse since Toro is healthy and Graveman was only a 2 month rental while Kimbrel is controlled through next season.
You’re missing the main point – how much value is there in breaking a 20 year playoff drought? How much is that worth to Seattle fans like myself who’ve seen year after year of heartache and total embarrassment? How many more prospects would it have taken to get that Kris Bryant deal over the line? If Bryant simply didn’t want to come to Seattle could they pip Oakland to Starling Marte? If not him what if the team could get one more bat like him in the lineup without giving up Julio, Noelvi, Kirby or Hancock? The A’s didn’t exactly give up the farm for that impact player.
The team was a laughing stock to the Nation on so many occasions; Not just the Kevin Mather comments- things like the Milton Bradley incident, Eric Byrnes riding his bike off into the sunset after batting 0.94, Chone Figgins debacle, Griffey in his chair in the clubhouse. How about the many terrible trades and drafts along the way. Jack Z lying about his sabermetrics experience. How much is a wild card playoff game worth to a fan base who’s suffered? If you are outside the fan base looking in it’s impossible to know.
The M’s could’ve still improved the team even if they made the Toro trade. Did Dipoto try to do so but Stanton not allow him to spend funds and or trade capital?
Also- You can’t possibly extrapolate Chargois and Graveman’s pre trade innings when the M’s had one THE most difficult first half schedule in the entire league. The 3rd most difficult in fact. This statistic was also brought up in the pre trade deadline articles.
Toro was so bad for 50% of his time in Seattle, he went from being a lock in the INF for 2022 to most likely starting the year as a Utility player. There’s no guarantee he becomes the player you talk about. What if he doesn’t pan out as a Utility player? He certainly didn’t excel in HOU in a part time role. He may work out but the fact that he was ABSYMAL for half his time in Seattle muddies the waters, adding to the complexities of the 2021 season.
I wasn’t a fan of Graveman getting traded–especially the timing of it. But it’s worth noting Seattle wasn’t using him in back-to-back games. It worked perfectly with Sewald taking the pressure off, but there was reason to believe they could get by without him.
What gets me is that Toro didn’t have much MLB experience (or success when he was given opportunities), so Seattle was acquiring yet another player who needed to play, learn, and be assessed. Kelenic, Raleigh, and Lewis were/are in that camp (Rodriguez will be soon enough). They needed, and still do, veterans.
I’m more neutral about it now, and I wouldn’t be surprised if Toro gets the first half of 2022 to prove he’s ready/capable for a regular role. But his September shows that he’s still in an adjustment phase. If they really want to hit the ground running, they’re probably better off with him in utility–and I do think he would be fine in utility.
Having a switch-hitter off the bench certainly wouldn’t be a bad thing, either.
Rendon stinks and I’ll boo him until I have no breath left
That makes you an idiot. You do realize he was the Angels best payer in 2020.
He was missed in Washington this year… can’t sign but so many big contracts
the angels certainly did and they still have plenty of money to sign pitching if they desire.
Sign a pitcher if they desire?! Where do you get your drugs?
Hip injuries are death for a player
Fine, but you’ll bo him for having an injury. That makes you an idiot.
playing a doctor online makes you a fool!
According to this Orthopedic Journal of Sports Medicine study on the Performance and Return to Sport After Hip Arthroscopic Surgery in Major League Baseball Players, 82% of the players in the study returned to the game post- surgery and concluded that
“The RTS rate for MLB athletes after hip arthroscopic surgery for FAI was high. There were similar IP, PA, and career lengths postoperatively compared with preoperatively and with matched controls. There was no significant difference in performance for pitchers and nonpitchers compared with matched controls after surgery.”
Let’s not generalize ourselves into the sky falling.
Thank you for the research!!!
Thanks for that research. So he has a good chance to come back.
Anyone who believes he doesn’t is ignorant and anyone who boos him for an injury is an idiot.
Define ‘good’. He’ll come back. He’ll be better than he was in 2021. But will be even close to a $35M player? You can likely fix a hip issue. You can’t fix getting older or being 32 years old.
I don’t want to generalize, but based on Rendon, Upton, Pujols, and Trout, it feels like the Angels refuse to believe in an aging curve.
@JoeBrady Do you follow the game? Seven of the top ten oldest teams made the playoffs. The Giants won the most games in baseball with 107 with most of their key contributors being 30 something. .
I can point out players like Yelich and Bellinger that are less than 30 that are not performing as they once did.
Rendon is one of the best in the world at what he does. How’s your life?
Yeah, he “stinks”. Sheesh.
Astros fan detected
Rendons injury will carry over to next season. Ive had two of those same surgeries.
I’m not sure how he passed the physical in 2020 before the angels signed him. This injury didn’t just happen this year
“I’m not sure how he passed the physical in 2020 before the angels signed him.”
Not being present for nor seeing the results of Rendon’s physical would make that tough. Not being a doctor doesn’t help either.
“This injury didn’t just happen this year”
Whoops, spoke too soon. Sorry doc.
It’s crazy how many surgeons are on the forums today. It is so generous that they taken the time to through Rendon’s file and have given their expert opinion on the outlook of his future.
What do your two surgeries have to do with Rendon’s injury/recovery time?
While Kris Bryant to the Mariners makes a lot of sense, they might be better off going with Chris Taylor and then spending their surplus on a Robbie Ray or Kevin Gausman type. The Mariners should look into bringing back Nelson Cruz too. He can make up for the power loss of Seager with much better supporting numbers. The Mariners were lucky this year given their -40+ Run differential on the season but they have a strong, young core to build around. This offseason will be a defining moment in DiPoto’s legacy in Seattle. Either he pushes the right buttons and gets the team into the playoffs or he pushes the wrong ones and they fall back to a 70-80 win team. Should be a fun offseason for Seattle fans.
Dipoto will trade France, Haniger, and Gilbert for Spencer Howard and cash considerations. Then his work for the offseason will be done and he can go back to playing fantasy baseball with his good pal Kyle Seager
As much as I would love to have Cruz back, I foresee a lot of DH time between Haniger and Kyle Lewis. I just don’t know if we could afford to tie up the DH slot with one single player next year.
Cruz back would be awesome. But when does he finally stop hitting? It would have to be on a one year contract with a team option for a second year. He wants another chance at that World Series title that he whiffed on. I have a feeling he’ll be looking to sign with a top AL contender. Back to Tampa Bay makes the most sense.
When does Nelson Cruz finally stop hitting?
In 238 plate appearances and 55 games with Tampa Bay, Cruz posted a .226/.283/.442/.725 line with an OPS+ of 96.
Yeah that’s a great sample size. In Minnesota, the same season, .294 in 296 AB’s so which one is he? But no, you’re right. Regardless of all the great numbers he has posted for numerous years, including up until the trade to Tampa Bay , he was horrible in 200 some odd at bats in Tampa Bay so now his career is done
Hard pass for me on Cruz. I prefer players that can play a position. As much as I love Nellie, that ship has sailed for me. Would rather sign Schwarber and his left handed +.900 OPS if we go bat first to even out the lineup.
Jose Ramirez. Please. Make a trade that doesn’t include Julio Rodriguez and get this man at 3B. Sign Semien for 2B and Conforto as a rotational OF, the lineup is complete.
The Mariners already have plenty of OF depth with Haniger, Kelenic, Lewis, Trammell, Fraley and the upcoming Julio Rodriguez. Conforto is not needed.
Except that they don’t and management/Dipoto has said they intend to at an outfielder. But you do you.
Haniger will almost certainly be dealt, it’s got dipoto all over it. This creates more AB’s for Lewis, kelenic, trammel, Rodriguez and Taylor when they sign him to be their utility player
If you think Haniger “will almost certainly be dealt,” you are clearly watching the Mariners from afar. Like…..from the Andromeda Galaxy! If you watched the Mariners frequently and followed the local (and certain National) media like I do you’d see that the Mariners have repeatedly said he’s the bedrock in their plans to get back to the playoffs. He’s the heart and soul of the team AND the most productive hitter in the lineup. It would be sheer lunacy to make plans to improve a lineup in order to break a 20 yr playoff drought while simultaneously trading away the best player from that lineup. If there is any transaction that includes Haniger this coming offseason it will almost certainly be an extension.
Besides- the M’s FO already has to try to replace the 35 HR’s and 101 RBI’s from Kyle Seager’s contribution to the lineup. Ship off Haniger then the FO has to somehow replace 74 HR’s and 201 RBI’s. You’re having a laugh if you think a lineup made up of a combination of the young SEA prospects and C Taylor not only replaces Seager and Haniger’s production but produces more than last years lineup. Haniger is going nowhere
The problem here is that there has been no proof that the Mariners have in fact tried talking to Mitch Haniger over an extension. The Seattle sports writers since last year have asked that question without any retort. So is Jerry Dipoto playing a game here? BUt maybe by chance they have talked to him and I just missed it. Maybe they have talked to him and he doesn’t want to talk. But I am doubting those last two because if it were the case he would have already been traded. I think the Mariners know that right now they need Mitch.
Conforto? Lol Please explain how that makes any sense at all. Do you not know the outfield in Seattle. Yeah let’s add another outfield to the mix because we don’t have Haniger already and then out two top prospects and then a former rookie of the year who’s coming back from injury and then another top 100 prospect and then a good replacement OF’er on Fraley. But yeah let’s add Conforto and not worry about any of the other positions that we have a need for. Just cause he’s from Seattle doesn’t mean he needs to play here.
Yep it is
Anyone that thinks Bryant or Chris Taylor are naive.
Actually both make plenty of sense actually n could definitely happen although the do need a left handed bat like Conforto as well with DiPoto anything can happen
Taylor would be a great fit. Plugs in just about anywhere with solid to good defense and IMO great and clutch hitting
I remember when Dipoto traded Taylor to the Dodgers. He could have had him for the last 7 years.
Trevor Story and a top line pitcher ie Schertzer or Verlander be way better than who was mentioned in this article.
Trevor Story is ass and highly unlikely to be willing to move from shortstop and T-Mobile is the perfect park for hitter like him to come and die. And please no Verlander. He’s so unbelievably full if himself I can’t stand listening to him. Plus, no Astros here please
I hope the Mariners don’t sign Bryant. Not worth the $$$ or year’s he is likely going to be looking for. Toro’s natural position is 3rd and Ty is great at 1st. I think that Dipoto has already said JP is our shortstop so we are looking for a great talent who is willing to convert to 2nd or a great talent at 2nd. My vote is Semien.
Dipoto has already stated that they are targeting players that are willing to get uncomfortable and play multiple positions. I don’t know exactly who that means, but there’s a few of them available.
it just means he is going get players to play out of position. Obviously, not a winning strategy, but that is the Dipoto way.
Sounds good to me!
How about JD Davis or Dom Smith for Haniger it helps both teams
You’re joking!? Pure fantasy- Haniger is not going anywhere. He’s the heart and soul of the team (along with JP Crawford,) the first name penciled into the lineup and currently their most productive player. If you’ve been paying attention to the information coming out of the FO you’d know that the USS trade Haniger ship has sailed. You can look for news of an extension on this site because a trade is not happening.
So, sometimes what people say and what they do are different things. Imagine for just a second that you are the Mariners General Manager. You know you have some holes to fill and maybe the best way is via trade. You might have noticed that you seemingly have any lot of young outfield talent at or very nearly major league ready but some pretty big holes in other positions both at the major league level as well as in the upper minors (including a RF on the horizon who looks the most like a generational talent that we’ve had since Griffey). You might think to yourself, hmm, maybe I could use one of these outfielders to fill another position. Do I get more trade value for a player like Haniger by saying, in public, well we think he’s a pretty talented guy but he’s been kinda brittle and he’s now moving onto the wrong side of 30 and doesn’t have as long a track record of success as he could for a guy his age and we don’t necessarily feel great about extending him because we’re not fully convinced he’s going to be there for us OR do you think you might create a better market for him by saying that he’s the heart and soul of the team and the first name on the lineup card, etc. etc? Now, I love Haniger. When he plays, he’s good and seems like a solid teammate and I expect Dipoto feels the same but, if he can be part of a package that brings back a #1 SP or a 3B like Jose Ramirez, well then, I’d say it sure has been nice having Hanny, I’ll miss him and I wish him well but it’s time to win a championship and I want the best possible roster I can get. I pray Dipoto feels the same way. The front office bowing to fan sentimentality was one factor in the failures of the Pinella era teams and I don’t have time for that nonsense now.
That you Brady?
Rendon is in the perfect place the Angels are always out of it early enough for injured guys to get a jump on being ready for the following season. God could come down from the Heavens to play for the Angels and they’d still finish 74-88 or something close to that.
Can’t argue with that. Even if he could pitch they’d still have 2-3 holes in the rotation and a shaky bullpen.
As long as he can throw a curve ball better than his kid can hit one.