The Miami Marlins have released a press release stating that the team has non-tendered two of its nine arbitration-eligible players. The two unlucky players were outfielder Chris Coghlan and righty reliever Ryan Webb.
The #marlins non-tender Chris Coghlan and Ryan Webb— clarkspencer (@clarkspencer) December 3, 2013
The Marlins' list of arbitration-eligible players included critical pieces such as Giancarlo Stanton, Steve Cishek, and Logan Morrison along with smaller bullpen and bench parts. The presumption here is that Miami tendered contracts to the remaining players. The five other players included Stanton, Cishek, Morrison, Mike Dunn, and Justin Ruggiano.
Of the two players not tendered contracts, Coghlan is the most surprising candidate. Coghlan has built a seemingly bulletproof reputation in the organization, as the team has suffered through his various struggles without hesitating to keep him on the Major League roster for as long as possible. He spent time the past three seasons alternately hurt, trying a new position, or struggling at the plate, but in that time he has spent just 542 plate appearances in the minors. Overall, Coghlan has hit .270/.337/.390 (.322 wOBA) but has been close to a replacement-level player for his career. The fact that the team is seemingly fed up with his multiple struggles on the field flies against the team's previous lenience to the 2009 Rookie of the Year.
Webb was in his final season of arbitration and was set to make an estimated $1.5 million this season, so his departure is not entirely shocking. And with Miami rumored to be a potential free agent player for names like Mike Napoli or Jarrod Saltalamacchia, the Fish may need as much of that money as possible. Webb owns a career 3.25 ERA and 3.45 FIP, both acceptable but mediocre numbers for a reliever.
The Fish could still get these players back on cheaper free agent contracts. Look for Coghlan to potentially get an offer to return to Miami for very little money, as I imagine Miami might be willing to continue negotiating with their organizational darling. Webb could negotiate down as well, but as a reliever, there may yet be a market for him in free agency.
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