The Texas Rangers officially exercised the 2018 option the team holds on pitcher Martin Perez, and declined options on first baseman Mike Napoli and pitcher Tony Barnette. The Rangers also announced that pitcher Austin Bibens-Dirkx and catcher A.J. Jimenez have cleared waivers, and that pitcher Chi Chi Gonzalez and infielder Hanser Alberto have been activated from the 60 day disabled list.
The only item on this list that is kind of surprising was the decision to decline the option on Barnette. Barnette had a strong 2016 campaign, but struggled in 2017, particularly early and late in the year. That said, with a team that is in need of relievers, the $4 million option on Barnette didn’t seem unreasonable. Instead, it appears that the Rangers will look to spend that money elsewhere.
On Bibens-Dirkx and Jimenez, each has been outrighted, though each can reject the outright assignment, and presumably will. Gonzalez and Alberto are back on the 40 man roster, though it remains to be seen whether the team will keep them on the 40 man roster, or waive or non-tender them later this winter.
In addition, the team is not making any qualifying offers to any free agents. Andrew Cashner is the only player who seemed to be a candidate, and there was talk a few weeks ago the Rangers expected to QO him, but Jon Heyman said last night the Rangers were expected to pass on it, feeling the risk of being saddled with a $17.4 million obligation for Cashner for 2018 was too great for the potential reward (a compensatory pick after the second round).