The Cubs have released Eric Hosmer, according to the veteran first baseman’s MLB.com profile page. Hosmer was designated for assignment last week, and now that he has gone unclaimed on waivers, he’ll return to the open market in the aftermath of the release.
It wasn’t an unexpected outcome given Hosmer’s underwhelming performance this season, as he hit .234/.280/.330 with two home runs over an even 100 plate appearances. The Cubs signed Hosmer to a one-year deal this past offseason hoping for a bounce-back in a best-case scenario, but more realistically viewing him as something of a placeholder until Matt Mervis was ready for a regular dose of first base duty in the majors. With Trey Mancini also getting a lot of action at first base and Patrick Wisdom able to play the position, Chicago didn’t even have room for Hosmer as a veteran complement.
Signing Hosmer came with essentially no financial cost to the Cubs, who owed him just a Major League minimum salary ($720K). As per the terms of his eight-year, $144MM deal signed with the Padres during the 2017-18 offseason, Hosmer is still owed $13MM in each of the 2023, 2024, and 2025 seasons, and San Diego is still responsible for the vast majority of that money. Should another club sign Hosmer to a new contract, that new team will again just have to pay a prorated minimum salary, with the Padres footing the rest of the $13MM bill for 2023.
Given this low-risk salary situation, it’s possible a team in need of first base help, left-handed hitting depth, or clubhouse leadership might explore bringing Hosmer aboard. However, it has been some time since Hosmer has been a truly productive member of a roster, as the 33-year-old has hit only .263/.323/.406 since the start of the 2018 season (or, when he joined the Padres in the first place). Those offensive numbers translate to just a 98 wRC+, and Hosmer’s overall value is -0.1 fWAR in the last five-plus seasons.
“Hosmer is still owed $13MM in each of the 2023, 2024, and 2025 seasons, and San Diego is still responsible for the vast majority of that money.”
The negative of longer term deals. Hosmer should just take the rest of the year off.
Just wait til these decade long quarter to half billion dollar contracts start to sour. Gonna be a league full of 50 year old Pujols clones
The money structure actually “helped” the Padres in this case since a majority of contracts are backloaded which typically keeps a struggling veteran on the roster long past their expiration date.
Even if the original 8/144 deal was paid out evenly, they’d have been on the hook for about $54 million over the final three years opposed to the $36 million they owe. It’s not fun to eat that, but it’s palatable comparatively.
Mmmmhhhmmm A.J. Preller loves cocaine
the great bambi
I mean, who doesn’t?
I think it smells pretty good, but I’ve never done it…
Thanks for the effort Eric.
Now, hit the bricks.
Oh Mr Hosmer! So sorry, so sad. Gotta stay in game, can’t officially retire or the pay checks stop. Obvious his heart wants to fish all day now.
No more even good plate eye. No more even great defense. Just a baseball body that washes up on shore. Zombie minor league clubhouse guy.
No he doesn’t have to stay in the game to get paid. Those contracts are guaranteed unless you do something stupid like Bauer did.
Bauer is still being paid by the Dodgers. Guaranteed is guaranteed.
If a player retires while still under contract, he no longer gets paid.
Gil Meche is a recent example of a player who retired while leaving money on the table. He felt he wasn’t earning his paycheck, and didn’t want to feel that way.
Mark Mcgwire had some kind of situation like that.
There is mental pressure he puts himself under pretending he still wants to play. After World Series win and best year and contract, he lost his fire and faked funk in San Diego. Now he probably tells his family, ashamed of making unearned money, “oh yes, definitely, yes, i still have more baseball goodness!” Then he cries alone, looking in the mirror half wishing the love for baseball came back and half wishing he had the guts to admit to his families that he wants to collect checks, go fishing, and stop taking zippies down the first base line.
He doesn’t have to stay in the game, he just needs to not file retirement papers. Hypothetically he can just spend the rest of this season and the next two seasons fishing while remaining a free agent, then officially retire after the conclusion of the 2025 season.
If he’s better at fishing, than baseball, can the Pro Bass Tour be far behind ?
ClUbHoUse LeAdersHiP… like these teams are a bunch of 9 yr olds that need a washed up, overpaid, underperforming “veteran” to steer the ship, give sage advice, and be a father figure. I hate this about MLB. Give a job to a prospect instead of waiting til they’re 25. OR bring up a seasoned minor league veteran as a bench option. Champagne wishes and caviar dreams, Mr. Hosmer!
You type like a 9 year old.
Hit the bricks.
Eat my bricks.
This one belongs to the Reds
I think he is…or a 25 year old prospect who didn’t get called up yet.
Show me a 9 year old who can spell “champagne” and I’ll show you a 25 year old prospect!
George Springer was almost 25 when he was called up. I might’ve exaggerated by a year but the point is teams delay good prospects in order to keep their prime years cheaper
I always thought good coaches are cheaper than good club house guys.
Rookies often are so thrilled to be in the big leagues, making big league money that they fool around and that can be bad for the clubhouse. I remember Ichiro and Randy Johnson complaining about that.
That said, I wonder how much leadership Hosmer can exude since everyone can see that he is a guy who keeps getting passed around and dropped after a few months. A guy like that who has good advice to give should be a coach. However, it wouldn’t shock me to see another team give him a shot since he is basically free by MLB standards.
Hosmers supposed leadership from the bench – was just an attempt by him to keep relevance so he could still hang around the MLB scene. He truly served absolutely no purpose on the Cubs.
If the Cubs had known they were going to be able to sign Mancini, I really don’t think Hosmer would ever have been brought in.
Mancini (who endured cancer, spent an insufferable 7 years with the Orioles, and earned his contract year to year) is a prime example of who you’d want in the clubhouse. Yes, rather a shame he wasn’t signed prior to Hosmer
So he is not a great defensive 1B (if he was ever more than average). He’s not a fast runner. He plays a power position, but does not hit with power. He’s been a below average hitter. The Padres signed him for being a club house leader, but when he no longer started everyday, had to pay off his contract to remove him as a clubhouse cancer. He will not be a low risk signing because San Diego is footing the bill, he will be a low chance of success because of all the things he has shown he can’t do well. Bringing up a rookie has higher odds of that player being good at something, anything, than signing Hosmer, and they will cost the minimum, also.
Hosmer has decent power. He just uses it to drive baseballs straight into the ground in the general direction of the second baseman. His defense is awful.
Thank you. Bingo!!
This gamble didn’t work out. The gamble on Bellinger has worked out very well.
A league minimum contract isn’t a gamble. Totally different from Belli
So the bigger risk paid off. Just giving credit where credit is due.
A Cards fan saying something nice about the Cubs? Gimme a chair, I gotta sit down before I pass out!
Lol. Like I said, credit where credit is due. Bellinger was a good signing that I thought was a bad signing at the time.
Bellinger was hot to start the year. Let’s see if it continues
Old timer 78
ALWAYS A CLASS ACT. ALWAYS A GENTLEMAN !!
Except when he made Voit leave town instead of accepting his inevitable fate…
Fernando Ringworm Jr.
He didn’t do anything to Luke Voit. A. J. Preller did. And Voit was available for the league minimum this past offseason if you really miss him that much.
Oh hi Eric!
Fernando Ringworm Jr.
Cute. Hosmer still did nothing wrong by exercising his NTC and Voit still wasn’t helping the Padres in 2022. There are plenty of reasons to not like Eric Hosmer but you’re really reaching on this one.
You ever been to spring training? Your class act is a complete jack ass who ignored 100s of kids wanting him to throw them a ball after a out or foul! Instead of tossing a ball to a kid and make his day he threw the balls back into the dugout! And completely ignored the fan base which there for that interaction with the players! Enjoy your millions Mr Hosmer!!
Just don’t go into the clubhouse and ask him about swing adjustments and ground balls – a former FanGraphs writer can attest to that one. Hosmer treated the guy like trash, belittled him, said he doesn’t need to make changes – then (probably) went on to hit 3 ground ball outs the next day.
Stay classy, Hosmer.
He’s sooooo bad he’s not worth the MLB minimum…
He’s rich beyond 99% of the country and he’ll continue to collect a paycheck instead of retiring.
Ego is a helluva drug
Eric Hosmer, the human hot potato. It couldn’t happen to a better guy that nobody else really wants him after he nixed a trade to the Nats.
I put that on the Padres. His contract was a bad idea from the get go. Coming from the World Champion Royals, he benefitted from the ‘halo effect” ( Bill James term) of that winning season. I remember thinking, “They don’t open the vault for local boy made good Adrian Gonzalez (from East Lake and a Mexican-American to boot!), but they break the bank for THIS guy?”
Fernando Ringworm Jr.
Different ownership group. Seidler would not have let Gonzalez walk.
Yep. And that was a shame. A-Gon was a perfect hero in SD. Hometown boy and a Mexican American, and a great hitter. He honestly could have been Mr. Padre II.
“The Yanks are paying you $3 million to play against them…”
That’s cold. And that’s Eric Hosmer now, with the Padres.
Bout time, one of the worst players in MLB
Mervis has not hit well, so it’s Mancini’s job now?
Mervis will get more than 60 AB before they give it to Mancini
He grounded out to second on his way to the parking lot.
Hosmer will not make even the slightest attempt to alter his worm killing swing. So… he can STILL collect his millions without making any changes… from the sidelines.
Detroit sign him
Unexpected response from server. Repeatedly get this message
I get this message on the app all the time too!! Why?