It's December 12. Did everybody prepare? Booze and party streamers and pounding "oonce, oonce, oonce, oonce" music? No? Where you been, man? It's December 12. Non-tender day!
You thought that was December 20?
That was last year, dude! It's the 12th this year. Kick it! Sweat, sweat!
The jam is live in effect and I don't waste time
Or the mike if it don't rhyme
Jump to the rhythm jump jump to the rhythm jump
And I'm here to provide
Peace and lyrics to make your shake your pants
Everybody dance n . . . yee.
There's no Non-Tender Party? Losers.
* * * *
The annual non-tender deadline is a goldmine for obsessives and cybergeeks. If you're reading this, you are probably one, too. Don't flinch too much---well, I wouldn't necessarily revel in it, either, but we are who we are. Jump to the rhythm, jump to the rhyme. Jump.
Anyway, the non-tender deadline is like a baseball transaction holiday; in its everlovingkindness, it grants us a whole new set of free agents. Well, maybe not us---unless the guy costs less than a knock-off Chia Pet, the Nats ain't buyin'. But we'll see. Need pitching!
Using the invaluable CBS Sportsline Offseason Player Tracker, I'm going to list every arbitration-eligible starting pitcher. I'll try to update this as results roll in, but my dedication on this sort of thing is rather weak. Honestly, I commend you to check out Banks of the Anacostia as well, because Jammin E is probably going to update more faithfully.
|Mark Prior||Chicago Cubs||Yes|
|Carlos Zambrana||Chicago Cubs||Yes|
|Mark Hendrickson||Los Angeles||Yes|
|Oliver Perez||New York Mets||Yes|
|Dave Williams||New York Mets||Yes|
|Victor Zambrano||New York Mets||No|
|Jorge Sosa||St. Louis||No|
|Runelvys Hernandez||Kansas City||No; released late last week|
|Brandon Duckworth||Kansas City||No; designated for assignment|
|Seth McClung||Tampa Bay||Yes|
The line between a reliever and a starter is sometimes blurred; if a guy was a starter in a recent season but relieved last season, which is he? While you're pondering that, consider you're trying to formulate a bright-line test to divide Joaquin Benoit from Scott Downs. Even obsessives like us can use our time more wisely!
Update [2006-12-12 19:27:37 by Basil]: Brandon Claussen (not pictured) was designated for assignment by the Reds. No, it wasn't because Wayne Krivsky found a new reliever; instead, it was to make room on the 40-man roster for a pre-existing reliever, David Weathers. Also, Claussen had rotator cuff surgery in August, so I'm assuming he's a no-go for the foreseeable future.
Add Jerome Williams to the starting pitcher list; he was non-tendered by the Oakland A's.
Update [2006-12-12 19:37:43 by Basil]: Non-starting pitcher non-tenders of note: 2B Marcus Giles and RP Chris Reitsma (Atlanta), OF Aaron Guiel (New York Yankees), RP Chin Hui-Tsao, OF Alexis Gomez (Detroit), OF Jayson Werth and C Toby Hall (Dodgers), and Jose Reyes. Whoops, wrong Jose Reyes. Anyway, Baseball Digest Daily has the final non-tender list.
Update [2006-12-12 19:37:43 by Basil]: Hey, forgot about the Nats! Here are our arbitration-eligibles:
- RP Chad Cordero
- OF Alex Escobar
- OF Austin Kearns
- SS Felipe Lopez
- SP John Patterson
RP Jon Rauch RP Ryan Wagner
* * * *
So, out of this entire list, I see a few additional free agent starting pitcher options, if the Lernastens are so inclined:
- Victor Zambrano (reportedly the Mets want to negotiate with him);
- Jorge Sosa;
- Runelvys Hernandez;
- Brandon Duckworth (though he's only DFA'ed at this point, and to the extent he's still considered a starter);
- Joel Piniero; and
- Jerome Williams.