We discussed yesterday that the Detroit Tigers tendered contracts to all of their arbitration eligible players, but 33 players around baseball were non-tendered, which makes them free agents.
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One of those players was Andy Dirks who was picked up last month on waivers by the Toronto Blue Jays. An interesting footnote to this is that Toronto has been criticized in baseball circles for how they conduct their waiver pickups, often putting claims on players they have no intention to keep or play to keep them away from other teams. Dirks may fit into that mold, I mean why pick him up if you aren’t going to tender him a contract?
Nonetheless, Dirks is a free man and while I have never been the biggest Dirks fan, I wouldn’t be opposed to the Tigers offering him a minor league deal to see if he can fully come back from last season’s back surgery. Minor league deals are always high risk/low reward.
But before we look at Dirks plight, the Tigers may be interested in a former Chicago White Sox reliever who was designated for assignment, refused that and became a free agent. They have company though, as reportedly nine other teams are in the mix.
Finally, those Blue Jays strike again and sign another former Tigers’ outfielder, Ezequiel Carrera.
Tigers among 10 teams interested in RP Ronald Belisario – Anthony Fenech, Detroit Free Press
"Belisario, who turns 32 this month, was designated for assignment by the White Sox on Nov. 20. He declined the assignment and elected free agency.He is coming off a career-worst season, posting a 5.56 ERA with a 1.44 WHIP, but he has had success in the big leagues before, most notably with the Dodgers in 2012 (2.54 ERA).Belisario has a 3.75 ERA in five big-league seasons. He has made at least 59 appearances every season.His fastball sits in the mid-90-m.p.h. range."
"It’s unclear whether the Tigers intend to inquire about Dirks’ availability, but the club could be interested in bringing him back on a minor-league deal with an invitation to spring training.General manager Dave Dombrowski told the Detroit News in late October that the club would’ve retained Dirks if they could have trusted him being 100 percent in 2015. He has hit .276 with 24 home runs and 100 RBIs in 297 career games."
Blue Jays sign Ezequiel Carrera – Tom Dakers, Bluebird Banter
"Ezequiel Carrera will likely be spending most of the summer in Buffalo. Last year he played 45 games with the Tigers, hitting .261/.301/.348 in 69 at bats. He also stole 7 bases.In Triple-A Toledo, he hit .307/.387/.422 with 6 home runs and 43 steals in 97 games and was an International League All-Star for the Mud Hens. In 862 minor league games he hit .288/.363/.381 with 273 steals, caught 91 times."