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MLB Recent Player News

Date Player News
10/30/2014 Darren O'Day, P (Bal) The Orioles have exercised a $4.25 million option on O'Day.

Analysis: O'Day, 32, was 5-2 with four saves and a career-low 1.70 ERA in 68 games.
10/30/2014 Wei-Yin Chen, P (Bal) The Orioles have exercised a $4.75 million option on Chen.

Analysis: Chen, 29, was 16-6 with a 3.54 ERA in 31 starts, setting a career best for wins. He had 54 starts in the past two seasons, two shy of the amount needed for his 2015 salary to become guaranteed at $6 million.
10/30/2014 Josh Johnson, P (SD) The San Diego Padres have declined Johnson's $4 million option for 2015. The right-hander could return to the Padres for a lesser deal. Johnson is eligible to become a free agent on Friday.

Analysis: Johnson didn't throw a pitch for the Padres in 2014 while making $8 million. He suffered an elbow injury during spring training and underwent reconstructive surgery.
10/30/2014 Rafael Soriano, P (Was) The Washington Nationals have declined the option on reliever Rafael Soriano.

Analysis: Soriano's contract included a $14 million club option for 2015.
10/30/2014 Adam LaRoche, 1B (Was) The Washington Nationals have declined the option on first baseman Adam LaRoche.

Analysis: The 34-year-old LaRoche's deal included a $15 million mutual optional for next season, but Washington instead chose to pay him a $2 million buyout.
10/30/2014 Denard Span, CF (Was) The Washington Nationals have exercised their $9 million option for 2015 on center fielder Denard Span.

Analysis: Span, Washington's leadoff hitter, batted .302 with 31 steals and tied for first in the NL with a Nationals-record 184 hits. He is a Gold Glove Award finalist.
10/30/2014 Kevin Youkilis, 3B (NYY) Former Red Sox infielder Kevin Youkilis is retiring, his agent says.

Analysis: Youkilis played parts of nine seasons in Boston and was a part of World Series teams in 2004 and '07. He was traded to the Chicago White Sox in 2012 and then played an injury-shortened year with the New York Yankees before spending last season in Japan.
10/30/2014 Huston Street, P (LAA) The Los Angeles Angels have exercised their $7 million contract option on Street. The Angels announced perhaps their easiest offseason decision Thursday.

Analysis: Street was an immediate hit after the Angels acquired the veteran right-hander from San Diego on July 19. He picked up 17 saves with a 1.71 ERA for the Angels, shoring up an inconsistent bullpen and playing a major role in Los Angeles' surge to the majors' best regular-season record.
10/30/2014 Dan Haren, P (LAD) Haren on Thursday exercised his $10 million player option for next season. The right-hander was 13-11 with a 4.02 ERA in his first season with the Dodgers.

Analysis: Last month, Haren activated the option guaranteeing the big payday by going seven innings in a loss to the San Francisco Giants. At that point in September, he wasn't sure whether he would return next year. Last week, the 34-year-old pitcher had arthroscopic surgery on his left shoulder to clean out bursitis and the AC joint. The team said he is expected to be ready by spring training.
10/30/2014 Hisashi Iwakuma, P (Sea) The Seattle Mariners will have Iwakuma under contract for the 2015 season. The Mariners announced Thursday that Iwakuma's $7 million option was vested based on his on-field performance.

Analysis: Iwakuma missed the first month of the 2014 season but went 15-9 with a 3.52 ERA in 28 starts. In 91 career games with Seattle, Iwakuma is 38-20 with a 3.07 ERA. General manager Jack Zduriencik said at the end of the season that Iwakuma would be returning for 2015.
10/30/2014 Koji Uehara, P (Bos) The Boston Red Sox have signed Uehara for two more years. The All-Star reliever will earn $18 million through 2016.

Analysis: Uehara joined the Red Sox in 2013 and earned the closer's role midway through the season. He was a key part of the team that won the franchise's third World Series in 10 years, striking out Matt Carpenter for the final out in Game 6 on this date last year. He will turn 40 before opening day.
10/30/2014 Kyuji Fujikawa, P (ChC) The Chicago Cubs have declined their option for next season on reliever Kyuji Fujikawa, making him a free agent.

Analysis: A longtime closer in Japan, the right-hander signed with the Cubs before the 2013 season but never delivered the way the organization hoped. He tore a ligament in his pitching elbow in his first year with the Cubs and underwent Tommy John surgery. Fujikawa returned in August. He was 1-1 with a 5.04 ERA and two saves in 27 appearances over two seasons with the Cubs.
10/30/2014 Mike Adams, P (Phi) The Phillies have declined a $6 million club option on Adams.

Analysis: Philadelphia made the move Thursday, allowing the relief pitcher to become a free agent. Adams had a 2.89 ERA in 22 games with the Phillies last season, with 21 strikeouts over 18 2-3 innings.
10/30/2014 Alex Rodriguez, 3B (NYY) Rodriguez's season-long suspension formally ended Thursday, a day after the World Series ended. The New York Yankees reinstated the third baseman from the restricted list.

Analysis: Rodriguez was suspended by Major League Baseball for violations of the sport's drug agreement and labor contract and lost just over $22 million of his $25 million salary. The three-time AL MVP, who turns 40 on July 27, is owed $61 million by the Yankees over the next three seasons. New York general manager Brian Cashman said it's possible Rodriguez may see some time at first base.
10/30/2014 Hiro Nakajima, SS (Oak) The Oakland Athletics have declined to exercise their $5.5 million contract option for shortstop Hiroyuki Nakajima and instead owe him a $500,000 buyout.

Analysis: The highly touted Nakajima, 32, never played a major league game after receiving a $6.5 million, two-year contract in December 2012. He missed time in his first season of 2013 because of a strained left hamstring, and the A's didn't have the same need for a shortstop once they acquired Jed Lowrie from Houston in early February of 2013.
10/30/2014 John Lackey, P (StL) The St. Louis Cardinals have exercised their 2015 contract option on Lackey, which is at the major league minimum. The right-hander agreed to an $82.5 million, five-year contract with Boston in December 2009 that contained a provision for a conditional team option at the minimum if he missed a season due to specified injury. Lackey did not pitch in 2012 after reconstructive elbow surgery.

Analysis: The major league minimum next year will be $500,000 plus a cost-of-living adjustment to be determined Nov. 20, which is likely to be $9,000 to $10,000. Lackey, who turned 36 on Oct. 23, was 14-10 with a 3.83 ERA last year with the Red Sox and Cardinals and was 1-0 in two postseason starts for the NL Central champions.
10/30/2014 Jack Hannahan, 1B (Cin) The Reds exercised Johnny Cueto's $10 million contract option on Thursday but decided to let outfielder Ryan Ludwick and infielder Jack Hannahan become free agents.

Analysis: Hannahan played only 26 games because of injuries. The Reds declined his $4 million option and will pay a $2 million buyout, half by this Nov. 15 and half by Nov. 15, 2015.
10/30/2014 Ryan Ludwick, LF (Cin) The Reds exercised Johnny Cueto's $10 million contract option on Thursday but decided to let outfielder Ryan Ludwick and infielder Jack Hannahan become free agents.

Analysis: Cincinnati had a $9 million option on Ludwick but chose to pay a $4.5 million buyout. Half will be paid by Nov. 15, 2015, and the other half by Nov. 15, 2016. Ludwick batted .244 with nine homers and 45 RBIs.
10/30/2014 Johnny Cueto, P (Cin) The Reds exercised Cueto's $10 million contract option on Thursday.

Analysis: Cueto also made $10 million last season, when he went 20-9 with a 2.25 ERA, the Reds' first 20-game winner since Danny Jackson in 1988. Cueto had been guaranteed $27 million over four years and can become a free agent after next season.
10/30/2014 Madison Bumgarner, P (SF) Bumgarner capped off a performance for the ages and earned MVP honors Wednesday night, pitching five scoreless innings of relief in Game 7 as the San Francisco Giants beat the Kansas City Royals 3-2 for their third World Series title in five seasons.

Analysis: Bumgarner earned a sensational save to go along with two sparkling wins as a starter in the Series. That on top of being MVP of the NL Championship Series and pitching a record 52 2-3 innings in this postseason. He went 4-1 with a 1.03 ERA in seven appearances in these playoffs and is 4-0 with a 0.25 ERA in five career World Series games.
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