Other Notable Non-Tenders

Atlanta non-tenders Ryan Church

The Braves acquired Ryan Church last year by unloading Jeff Francoeur on the Mets. Church has seen a large power drain since 2006, as his ISO has steadily fallen from .250 down to a meager .111 in 2009. Church still showed average on base abilities, and his 4.0% HR/FB rate is unsustainable. His power will likely partially rebound in 2010, and thanks to his above average fielding in the corners, he could be an above average player in a starting role. Church has had an unfortunate injury history, but many of his injuries have been of the freak variety. He could be this offseason’s version of Ryan Langerhans.

Seattle non-tenders Ryan Langerhans

Well, that is, except for Ryan Langerhans. With Ken Griffey‘s return and Michael Saunders and Bill Hall on the roster, there just wasn’t room for Seattle to carry another outfielder. His primary value comes from fantastic defense. In only 39 games, Langerhans posted a +5.5 UZR in LF – normally a sample that is too small to draw conclusions, but this is only slightly higher than his career mark of +17.6/150. He won’t hit for average – his .232 career batting average has kept him out of the major leagues, but he has decent power and walks enough that his 29% K rate doesn’t make him an offensive liability. Langerhans can play any OF position, and any team that needs an OF should have him on their radar.

Oakland non-tenders Jack Cust

Jack Cust is the model of the “Moneyball” type of player that makes certain traditional types froth over with rage. He’s slow, can’t play defense, and strikes out a ton. Yet somehow, he’s managed to put up wRC+ numbers over 100 each of the last three years, thanks to high BB and HR rates. However, defense does have value, and the Athletics would have actually had to pay Cust to play for them this season. Cust has declined steadily, as his HR/FB rate dipped to 17.7% in 2009, the lowest of his time with Oakland. A slight bounce back may be possible, but it is also possible that age may be catching up to him, as his skillset does not age well historically. It’s hard to imagine Cust not catching on somewhere, but he’s strictly a DH at this point, and is a below average player.

How do you think Church, Langerhans, and Cust will perform? Project them here!

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4 Responses to “Other Notable Non-Tenders”

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  1. Steve C says:

    The Yankees should look at Cust as a DH option. Big left handed power bat should fit in quite nicely with their stadium. Probably be pretty cheap as well.

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    • Rob in CT says:

      Cust and Swisher on the same team. I know some Yankees fans whose heads would explode. THE STRIKEOUTS! AHHHH!

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    • Rod says:

      I’d love to have Cust on the Yankees. I know his skill set doesn’t age well but he isn’t exactly a 35 year old and three years does not a trend make. He would be cheap and has a decent enough chance to produce as well as Damon or Matsui would have at DH especially in that stadium. The biggest downside I see are his platoon splits. Granderson is already one liability against LHP, Cust would just be another one. Then again, 75% of your at bats are usually going to be against RHP so it’s not the worst thing ever.

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  2. Nathaniel Dawson says:

    jack, can you point me to the studies you know of that examine “old player skills” and how that skill set ages? I would very much like to read those and learn a bit more about it.

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