One of the things that has caused some confusion is the option situation regarding Chris Ray and Brandon McCarthy. Jamey Newberg wrote, when we first acquired Ray, that he had two options remaining, and Evan Grant wrote yesterday that McCarthy has an option left.
I, meanwhile, have written that neither Ray nor McCarthy can be sent to the minors without clearing waivers.
Thanks to JackDaddy for finding this old Keith Law piece on transactional issues, which includes an explanation of this particular conundrum:
There is a rule rarely invoked in baseball that creates a situation where a player who has options remaining still has to clear waivers to be sent on an optional assignment. If the assignment is to begin at least three full calendar years from the date of the player's first appearance on a 25-man roster, then the player can not be sent on an optional assignment without first clearing major league waivers. These waivers are revocable, and players usually clear those waivers without incident.
So, Ray and McCarthy both have options remaining, and if they clear waivers, they stay on the 40 man roster and it isn't considered an outright assignment.
However, they each would still have to clear waivers to be optioned, and if they were claimed and the Rangers pulled them back from waivers, they couldn't be put on revocable waivers again for a period of time.