Today is the day that MLB teams have to offer their arbitration eligible players a contract or let them become free agents. On our list are Jose Bautista, Raul Chavez, Shawn Camp. Jason Frasor, Brandon League, Shaun Marcum, Dustin McGowan, Brian Tallet and Jeremy Accardo.
Accardo is making it very clear he would like to let him become a free agent:
"We've had no discussion with the club nor do we intend to," Damon Lapa, Accardo's agent, said in an e-mail on Friday night. "It is our hope that Jeremy is non-tendered by the Jays."
I can't really say I blame him after a season of going up and down from Toronto to Las Vegas and he's clearly not a favorite of Cito's. While I believe that if a player wants to leave you ought to get rid of him, Accardo is in a bad spot because he's not going to get a lot money in arbitration. For his talent, he'll likely still be a bargain, or at least not be over paid by much.
I think the team would like to include him in a trade, as he does have value, but they only have 10 hours left before the deadline. If they don't trade him, I think they have to tender him a contract and try to move him afterwards. Accardo won't be happy but then no where in Alex Anthopoulos' job description does it say he had to keep every player happy.
At the other end of the scale is Jose Bautista. I'm sure Jose would like to stay with the team and Cito Gaston clearly loves him. But he made $2.4 million last year and would likely get a healthy raise in arbitration. Does anyone, outside of Cito, think he's worth $4 million plus to the team? He hits lefties well and has a rocket for an arm in the outfield, but lots of guys hit lefties well and the arm, while great fun to watch, isn't worth $4 million. It will be a tough choice but I'd think that they won't offer him a contract.
The rest of the group? I think most of them will receive an offer, depending on what the team thinks they could get from an arbitrator. Raul Chavez might be on the bubble as catchers like him are easy to pick up, but then we don't have another catcher on the roster. And Dustin McGowan, if you don't think he'll pitch again, why keep paying him? The others I'd expect they will offer contracts to, Brian Tallet would likely get the most money, but still under $3 million I'd think. He'd be worth more than that in a trade, if you didn't want to pay him.
Anyway, what do you think the Jays will do today?