Nationals

MLB non-tender deadline: Schwarber, Rosario among new free agents

Nationals

The slow-moving MLB free agent market added a slew of new names Wednesday, when the annual non-tender deadline forced teams to make decisions on whether or not to retain their pre-arbitration and arbitration-eligible players for the 2021 season.

MLB’s offseason has been slow to develop but the addition of non-tendered players gives teams a greater sense of what their options are this winter. While Wednesday’s moves didn’t add any names to the top-tier of free agents available, there were several everyday players let go who could play valuable roles for a new club next year.

Here’s a list of some notable players who were non-tendered prior to Wednesday’s 8 p.m. ET deadline.

OF Eddie Rosario

Former team: Minnesota Twins

The Twins reportedly placed Eddie Rosario on waivers this week in hopes of trading him, but there were no suitors willing to claim him and take on the salary he was projected to receive in arbitration. Rosario, 29, has placed among the top 20 in AL MVP voting each of the last two seasons. Known for his power at the plate, Rosario’s 96 home runs since 2017 rank 14th in the AL.

Non-tender reported by MLB Network’s Jon Heyman

OF Kyle Schwarber

Former team: Chicago Cubs

The Cubs elected to tender third baseman Kris Bryant a contract, but outfielders Kyle Schwarber and Albert Almora Jr. were among those who weren’t so lucky. Schwarber, 27, hit just .188 during MLB’s pandemic-shortened 2020 season. While his 105 home runs over the last four years rank ninth in the NL, Schwarber’s suspect defense and lack of consistency at the plate ultimately cost him.

 

Non-tender reported by ESPN's Jesse Rogers

1B/DH José Martínez

Former team: Chicago Cubs

Another Cub let go was first baseman José Martinez, who Chicago acquired at the trade deadline last season. Martínez, 32, hit .182 over 34 games between the Cubs and Tampa Bay Rays last season. His defense has waned in recent years, leading to him to make a bulk of his 2020 starts at DH. Martínez’s struggles against righties profile him as a platoon bat moving forward.

Non-tender reported by ESPN’s Jesse Rogers

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OF Adam Duvall

Former team: Atlanta Braves

The Braves reportedly non-tendered Adam Duvall on Wednesday after he hit 16 home runs for them over 57 games in 2020. Duvall, 32, is still a candidate to return to Atlanta if he’s willing to play for less than what he was expected to receive in arbitration. However, Atlanta does have top prospect Cristian Pache poised to handle a corner outfield spot opposite Ronald Acuña Jr.

Non-tender reported by ESPN's Jeff Passan

OF Brian Goodwin

Former team: Cincinnati Reds

The Reds solved one piece of their complicated outfield puzzle by non-tendering Brian Goodwin, who ultimately didn’t stack up against their other outfield options of Nick Castellanos, Jesse Winker, Shogo Akiyama, Nick Senzel and Aristides Aquino. Goodwin, 30, is a former first-round pick of the Nationals who hit .262 with a .796 OPS and 17 home runs during his only full season at the MLB level in 2019.

Non-tender reported by Cincinnati Enquirer’s Bobby Nightengale

INF Hanser Alberto

Former team: Baltimore Orioles

After picking up shortstop José Iglesias’s team option and reaching a deal with Yolmer Sánchez to avoid arbitration, Hanser Alberto’s time with the Orioles appeared to be up even before it was reported that he would be non-tendered. Alberto, 28, hit .299 with a .735 OPS over 193 games between 2019 and 2020. He’s a solid third baseman capable of playing second base and shortstop as well.

Non-tender reported by MLB.com's Joe Trezza

SP Carlos Rodón

Former team: Chicago White Sox

The White Sox announced Wednesday that they would not be tendering a contract to former No. 3 overall pick Carlos Rodón, who has never been able to live up to his elite prospect status. Rodón, 27, has a career 4.14 ERA over six seasons in the majors. Injuries have limited him to just nine starts (11 appearances) the last two years, but he remains a candidate to return to the team on a cheaper deal.

 

Non-tender announced by the White Sox

OF Nomar Mazara

Former team: Chicago White Sox

Joining Rodón in free agency is Nomar Mazara, who was also non-tendered Wednesday ahead of the deadline. Mazara, 25, was once ranked as high as the fifth overall prospect in the minors by Baseball Prospectus, but neither his bat nor his glove have reflected that status. He owns a .744 OPS and -22 defensive runs saved over five seasons between the White Sox and Texas Rangers.

Non-tender announced by the White Sox

3B Maikel Franco

Former team: Kansas City Royals

One of 15 players to appear in all 60 of his team’s games in 2020, Maikel Franco bounced back from his abysmal 2019 campaign but it wasn’t enough to convince the Royals to keep him around. Franco, 28, hits for modest power and doesn’t strike out often, though he never draws walks nor does he bring much to the table defensively.

Non-tender reported by MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand