Remember when the Sox traded for Coco Crisp before the 2006 season and it looked like a great idea?
Three mediocre seasons led to his being dealt to the Royals for Ramon Ramirez and today Kansas City declined Crisp's $8 million option, choosing to pay a $500,000 buy-out instead.
Crisp was at a grim .228/.336/.378 this season and played in only 49 games.
The money is all relative, but it's going to be a long, cold winter for some players. The non-tender market is likely to be bigger than ever before and many "name" free agents will find they have to settle for one-year deals.
The star players will get theirs. But a large-market team willing to spend, say, $500,000 extra on a B-List player or two will be able to construct a very solid bench and bullpen with all the choices that will be out there.
The Red Sox, for instance, are willing to pay the arbitration cost on Jeremy Hermida to see whether he can fulfill his potential. Those are the sort of moves the Red Sox, Yankees, Tigers and other monied teams can make.
Bad economic times are actually good for such teams in terms of player acquisition because the small-market teams become less active in the market.