Minor Transactions of Note: Graveman Finds a New Team, Sanchez Waived, Reds Active, More

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Minor Transactions of Note: Graveman Finds a New Team, Sanchez Waived, Reds Active, More

Chicago Cubs

Thanksgiving is not usually a HUGE line of demarcation for transactions around baseball, but I wonder if it will be this year. Consider that, generally speaking, guys like to have deals done – if at all possible – before major holidays. It’s a human thing.

But this year, the December 2 non-tender deadline comes on the Monday after Thanksgiving. And since that deadline changes the makeup of the free agent market, and since there are sometimes deals at the zero hour, I tentatively expect we might have a very quiet Thursday through Sunday on the transaction front. It’s possible a big deal or a trade could break, but after tomorrow night, I just wouldn’t expect the big fat middle of the free agent market to see much action.

In the run-up to Thursday, however, we should continue to see a steady stream of lesser deals. Here’s just a quick rundown of some of the lesser transactions around baseball the last couple days:

  • By the dollars, it turns out the Cubs were just barely right to let Kendall Graveman go rather than pick up his $3 million option:

  • Depending on how achievable the incentives, it’s possible Graveman could wind up with that $3 million after all, though with the Mariners, it won’t come without healthy performance. As a club in a perpetual state of rebuilding, the Mariners might’ve made more sense for Graveman around that price tag in any case, but hey, I’ll own it: I thought the Cubs would pick up the Graveman option to keep him as optionable rotation depth. They instead chose to decline and add a similar pitcher in Colin Rea to the 40-man roster. I was close, but wrong, and it looks like the Cubs made the right mathmatical call. (Of course, it remains to be seen whether they made the right *player* call. The fact that Graveman was able to secure a guaranteed big league deal indicates it’s not as if he was obviously broken or anything.)
  • It’s not too often you see a guy win the Gold Glove and then immediately get dumped, but Yolmer Sanchez was a lock to be non-tendered anyway:

  • I can’t imagine Sanchez won’t clear waivers (especially when you consider that there is already another elite defensive second baseman hitting the market in Ryosuke Kikuchi), so he’ll become a free agent soon. There, he’ll be a guy who is considered one of the best dudes in the clubhouse, and is among the best defensive second basemen in baseball (and he can also play third base well, too). But the bat is about 20% worse than league average, with no indication it’s going to get better than that. So basically, you’re talking about a bench guy who can play great defense, but would need to start almost every day for that defense to be truly impactful at a position like second base. He’ll get a job somewhere, to be sure, but I don’t know that it’ll be as a starter.
  • We mentioned Martini before as an interesting depth bat type of guy, and he might be a nice contributor for the Reds, who also picked up a depth arm:

  • Another catcher goes off the board, though Garneau is more of a solid third catcher at AAA than a clear big-league back-up:

  • Former Cubs lefties Rob Zastryzny and Hunter Cervenka just signed with the Orioles on minor league deals.


Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.