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Monday, December 5, 2022

Pittsburgh Pirates Options Used in 2022

For two years running, I have broken down options used and service time accrued after the season. Obviously, we still have about a week left to go, but in an effort to spread out some topics and fit everything into a packed offseason article schedule, I decided to look at players who used options this week.

Honestly, at this point, no one who hasn’t used an option yet for 2022 is going to use one before the season lets out, so the list shouldn’t change between now and then. If it does, well, I’ll let you know next week.

For the uninitiated, any player that was optioned for 20 or more days—in total, not necessarily consecutively—by rule use an option year. The following is a list of players who qualify, along with how many options they each have remaining:

Miguel Andújar – 0

Jeremy Beasley – 1

Diego Castillo – 2

Rodolfo Castro – 1

Zack Collins – 0

Roansy Contreras – 1

Oneil Cruz – 0*

Jason Delay – 2

Junior Fernandez – 0

José Godoy – 1

Max Kranick – 1

Tucupita Marcano – 1

Nick Mears – 0*

Cal Mitchell – 2

Johan Oviedo – 1

Kevin Padlo – 0

Hoy Park – 2

Liover Peguero – 2

Yohan Ramirez – 1

Canaan Smith-Njigba – 2

Peter Solomon – 1

Eric Stout – 1

Jack Suwinski – 2

Travis Swaggerty – 2

Cam Vieaux – 2

Bryse Wilson – 0

Miguel Yajure – 0*

Cam Alldred (12 days), Tyler Heineman (2 days), Colin Holderman (16 days), and Luis Ortiz (4 days) all spent less than 20 days on optional assignment. Therefore, by rule, those days will count as Major League service time and no options are used for 2022.

Despite being listed as zero, by my calculations, Cruz, Mears, and Yajure should qualify for fourth options in 2023.

Delay was on option for exactly 20 days, meaning he was right on the cut.

Even though he wasn’t on option for long enough, Vieaux still should use an option for 2022. The only way a player uses an option when outrighted is if they have options remaining and are re-acquired after 20 days, as Vieaux was when he was selected a second time. This was the case for Jacob Stallings in 2016.

Finally, I’m not sure how 27 compares to any totals around the league, but it certainly feels high, especially compared to the 2021 season, when 19 players used options.

Pirates Payroll Updates

—Ji Hwan Bae had his contract selected, with Tyler Heineman going on the 7-day concussion IL to make room.

With just a few weeks left in the season at that point, Bae should accrue .013 days of service, while payroll goes up $50,000.

—The team claimed Miguel Andújar off waivers from the New York Yankees, selected the contract of José Godoy, while designating Michael Chavis and Greg Allen for assignment to make room.

Andújar had one option remaining going into the season, and he was down long enough with the Yankees to use that, so he will be out of options going into 2023, as noted above.

By my count, Andújar had accrued 3.110 years of service coming into this season, with .041 more days in 2022, for a total of 3.151. Add .010 for his stint to end the season and he comes up .011 days short of 4.000 years of service in 2023, meaning he would still have three years of arbitration remaining.

However, because service counts are weird and MLB doesn’t seem to follow its own rules, the 2022 Yankees media guide has Andújar listed as having 3.117 years of service, or .006 more days than me. Add the same .051 days for 2022 and he still comes up .004 days short; however, as illustrated, my count for 2022 probably doesn’t match official MLB counts, for whatever reason.

In conclusion, my bet is that despite my counts that come in under 4.000 years of service going into 2023, Andújar will actually just eclipse 4.000—probably by just a few days—and actually have only two years of contractual control remaining going into 2023, both at arbitration rates.

As for payroll implications, Andújar becomes the 13th Pirate to be paid at a rate over $1 million, with an increase of $71,429 for his 10 days on the roster.

As for Godoy, payroll goes up $32,192 after his selection.

Finally, after being outrighted yesterday, payroll goes down $18,919 as a result of Chavis’ ($151,121 estimated split) outright and $22,612 for Allen ($114,100 estimated split), assuming they both accept the assignment that is.

Both should have the right to elect free agency immediately after the season as Article XX(D) free agents, saving some time as opposed to waiting for minor league free agency.

—Payroll stands at $60,918,780 for the Labor Relations Department, while it’s $73,953,029 for CBT purposes.

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A longtime Pirates Prospects reader, Ethan has been covering payroll, transactions, and rules in-depth since 2018 and dabbling in these topics for as long as he can remember. He started writing about the Pirates at The Point of Pittsburgh before moving over to Pirates Prospects at the start of the 2019 season.

Always a lover of numbers and finding an answer, Ethan much prefers diving into these topics over what’s actually happening on the field. These under and often incorrectly covered topics are truly his passion, and he does his best to educate fans on subjects they may not always understand, but are important nonetheless.

When he’s not updating his beloved spreadsheets, Ethan works full-time as an accountant, while being a dad to two young daughters and watching too many movies and TV shows at night.


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Ethan, you neglected to list Cederlind, who has 2. Easy to forget since he hasn’t thrown a pitch in 2 years, but he’s still on the 40-man.


I thought the flavor of the day (B. Wilson) had an option left?

Wilbur Miller

Let’s work on shortening this list.


And that’s just for starters. It’d be easy to double that list. Think of all the bookkeeping fees Nickels could save!


I’d keep Ramirez as early season AAA pen depth and Delay because someone has to play backup catcher until Endy “earns” his way onto the team magically in June. Everyone else is heading for the bin.

Last edited 2 months ago by SBRO
Wilbur Miller

They need to do better than Delay. A defense-only C who consistently overthrows a 6’7” SS on steals isn’t very useful.


They needed to do better this year too, but instead we got what we got. I’m in the “devil you know” camp because left with an open spot on the depth chart, BC will almost certainly find the very worst option available on the open market.

But I get what you’re saying.

Wilbur Miller

Ha, on a 1-10 scale the Pirates frequently have a 1, so you figure it can’t get worse. But BC is the one GM who’s more than capable of finding a -3.


Hard to make a case for any of the original list, except for Jason Delay as the back-up Catcher to Endy Rodriguez. I really thought we were heading in the right direction when Chavis and Allen were DFA’d. I was expecting more to leave, but instead BC circled around and picked Andujar off the heap. OPS has been on a downward trend for 4 years and his K/BB rate keeps going in a negative direction – 27 K, 4 BB in a SSS so far in ’22 and no options left?

As for veterans, Gamel becomes a FA, and the only one that made a case for himself in 2022 was Newman. But, it looks like the best move for a building/re-building team would be Cruz, Castro, and Bae to join Hayes and a 1B TBNL for 2023.


Off that list Ramirez’ stuff interest me, ground ball/ strike out stuff if they ever solve the control issues.

Wilbur Miller

I’m sure we can substitute ten other guys.

The wild card is the injured guys. You’d have to know more about the medical reports to decide whether to stick with Kranick and Mears. And Cederlind, who’s not even in here as he was never activated.


Mears is out of options. He can return on an NRI, and there’s a fair to decent chance he’d stay. Difficult to believe anyone else would claim him after the year he’s had.

Kranick still has an option and I think is worth keeping. He’ll be back on the 60IL as soon as spring training starts, and all it would take is the meager discipline from BC to NOT claim a redundant no-options-left washout from another organization over the winter to keep a semi-interesting arm.

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