The Rays have many arbitration cases pending at this point, but according to some C Rene Rivera may be the sole non-tender candidate
Tim Dierkes of MLBTR released the list of players he believes may be non-tendered when the deadline passes this Wednesday, 11PM CT. If he is correct, those players become free agents. Of course if a team knows they will non-tender a player, they can attempt to work out a trade with another team.
Rays Catcher Rene Rivera is the only Rays player included on the Dierkes non-tendered list. He is projected to get a jump to $1.6 million after providing the Rays with a less than encouraging -2.0 WAR.
Curt Casali and Luke Maile would be in line to hold the fort if the Rays do let Rivera go, although Rivera could also be brought back at a lower cost. I still get the sense that the Rays could look to bring Dioner Navarro back to Tampa, being one of the few teams that may be willing to offer him the majority of the playing time, something he covets. Still, by mid-season, Justin O’Conner may be the best option for the Rays.
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Arbitration Cases Remaining
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That leaves the following
- Logan Morrison $4.1MM
- Jake McGee $4.7MM
- Logan Forsythe $3.3MM
- Desmond Jennings $3.1MM
- Rene Rivera $1.6MM
- Alex Cobb $4.0MM
- Drew Smyly $3.9MM
- Brandon Guyer $1.3MM
- Erasmo Ramirez $2.8MM
If the Rays keep Rivera around, that would add up to $28.8m ($27.2 if not). Combined with what Cot’s Baseball has the Rays in line for, that adds up to $56.983 million for 13 players in 2016 (without Rivera included).
Rivera may not be owed very much if he is kept on by the Rays, but when you’re budget is as tight as it is in Tampa, you make every single penny count. We will find out Wednesday what direction the Rays decide to go in.