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Royals decline options on Crisp, Olivo, Yabuta

Nov 6, 2009, 2:33 PM EDT

Kansas City jumped into the option-related fun being had across baseball today by declining 2010 options on Coco Crisp, Miguel Olivo, and Yasuhiko Yabuta.
Acquired from the Red Sox for reliever Ramon Ramirez last winter, Crisp hit just .228/.336/.378 before undergoing season-ending shoulder surgery to repair a torn labrum in late June.
He’s not a sure thing to be fully healthy by spring training and either way choosing a $500,000 buyout over an $8 million option was an easy call. Ramirez, incidentally, went 7-4 with a 2.84 ERA in 69.2 innings for the Red Sox while making less than Crisp earned from the buyout.
Parting ways with Olivo is a more interesting decision. He batted .255/.278/.444 in 84 games last year, at which point the Royals re-signed him for $2.7 million. Now after hitting .249/.292/.490 in 114 games this season–a 60-point OPS jump in significantly more playing time–the Royals have opted against bringing him back for $3.3 million.
If he was worth $2.7 million then he’s certainly worth $3.3 million now, but perhaps the Royals finally (and smartly) got tired of watching him making an out 75 percent of the time.

  1. thebaseballfish - Nov 6, 2009 at 4:37 PM

    Olivo’s 2010 option was a mutual option. It was common knowledge in Kansas City that he was going to decline his side of the option and head out on the open market. Whether or not the Royals picked up their end was going to be moot regardless.
    The incentives built into his contract also make him more expensive than the base salary number. His 2009 base rate was $2.7 million, but if I recall correctly he made an additional $600,000 via games played and plate appearance bonuses. Since his 2010 option was set up with the same incentives, he figured to make around $4 million if he stayed healthy in 2010.
    By the team declining the option, they allow Olivo to save face and keep the decision out of his lap. Safe to say that he’s going to find someone to pay him more than $4 million for 2010 so this works in his favor.

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