Pirates to Officially Decline Options on Maholm and Snyder

The Pittsburgh Pirates will officially decline the options of Paul Maholm and Chris Snyder, according to Rob Biertempfel in two Twitter updates this morning (here and here).  Neither move comes as a surprise.  We’ve known for the last few weeks that the Pirates intended to decline each option.  The Pirates paid $750 K to buy out each player.

The Pirates have until 12:01 AM Thursday to negotiate new deals with each player before they can officially talk with other teams.  Chris Snyder qualifies as a Type B free agent, so the Pirates could get a compensation pick if they offered him arbitration.  The only way they could get the pick is if he declined and signed elsewhere.  Arbitration would land Snyder a raise over his $5.75 M salary in 2011.  The Pirates have already essentially paid him $750 K this year with the buyout.  If Snyder accepted arbitration, he would probably end up costing more than his $6.75 M option price, which makes it unlikely that he’s tendered an offer.

The Pirates can re-sign either player, regardless of whether they offer arbitration.

The team still holds options on Ryan Doumit and Ronny Cedeno.  They are expected to decline Doumit’s option, but Cedeno’s is a possibility.