Decision time on Raburn has arrived

The Tigers have spent the last few weeks without an answer for Ryan Raburn’s situation. When team president/general manager Dave Dombrowski was asked about Raburn during his season-ending press conference a few weeks ago, he said he hadn’t talked with Raburn yet. Nor was there an answer during Friday’s Torii Hunter press conference, though Dombrowski’s remarks about potentially adding a right-handed hitting outfielder as at least a platoon option alongside Andy Dirks seemed to hint Raburn was a player without a role.

Well, Raburn’s fate as a Tiger is about to be answered. It could come as soon as Tuesday, when the team has to set its 40-man roster. If not Tuesday, it could be answered Nov. 30, the deadline for teams to offer contracts to arbitration-eligible players. (Given Dombrowski’s track record, I’d expect the answer to come Tuesday. Remember, he released Marcus Thames a few years ago soon after the offseason began, rather than wait for the non-tender date.)

Raburn avoided arbitration the last couple years with a two-year, $3.4 million contract he signed after the 2010 season. That contract is now up, but Raburn has a year to go before free agency.

If the Tigers designate him for assignment Tuesday, Detroit can try to trade him, or it can wait to see if another team claims him on waivers. Neither seems likely. The Tigers have had a few weeks to try to work out a trade, and Raburn’s arbitration eligibility would carry over to any team that claimed him.

Technically, Raburn still has an option left, but it’s a moot point. The Tigers seemingly used it up when they sent him to Triple-A Toledo at the end of May, but since he was called up less than 20 days later, so it wasn’t. With more than five years of service time, however, Raburn has the right to decline a minor-league assignment.

Cross out those options, and the other choice is releasing him, parting ways with a versatile player who showed promise for years but has never put a full productive season together. It would be a tough choice for the Tigers to make. If Raburn doesn’t have a role, however, Detroit might not have another choice.

26 Comments

ran rayburn – you will be missed. not really, but at least you’ll get a new start. you never deserved to be booed.

and you will be if you stay. maybe not right away but the second you make an error or GDIP or leave men stranded on base.

I don’t think its that tough of a choice!

No choice with the fans and Ryan needing a change. Can see him being very effective at the Rays.

Just beware RR landing with the Hawk Sox!!!

No it’s not a tough choice, and unfortunately the time has come. But that being said I have been to a lot of games were Ryan Raburn sent me home happy ( that sounds weird lol) but he was responsible for a lot of walk offs. I like him and always root for him.

Well, I pretty much agree with all of you, which is a rarity (Or maybe it’s the other way around?). I can see how Beck would term Raburn’s release “a tough choice.” The guy did have some lengthy periods of productivity, but just couldn’t put a full season together. And the Tigers seem to be in the market for someone with the skills Raburn could bring to the table. But…it would likely be horrible for Raburn considering the situation with the fans A fresh start somewhere else would probably be best for all.

Lots of guys have been tossed out of Detroit but found success in a different environment. Ryan Raburn gave us lots of memorable moments. All the best to you, Ryan.

I always appreciate the sensible approach the posters here take. Compliments to all of you. And everybody spelled his name correctly, including Evan who is propagating an old joke we came up with.
I agree that Raburn made some major contributions over his years in Detroit. It was painful watching him go through what he went through this season. I think he has some good baseball left in him and that he will demonstrate it elsewhere.
From a team viewpoint, I hate to see a guy let go for nothing when he could have brought value at one point. At least, I think he could have brought value.

I think that Raburn is in dire need of a change of scenery. Whatever caused him to go into three and four month long slumps where he played below replacement level will always be a mystery. I don’t consider him versatile, as he was a butcher defensively in the infield, but he hit the cover off the ball down the stretch in two different seasons. Last year, his numbers were the worst of any hitter in the league with at least 200 plate appearances.

The Tigers may not need the space on the roster, however. There are two spots open on the 40 man roster, but this year’s rule 5 class is very thin. They have Bruce Rondon, who will certainly be added to the roster. Maybe Melvin Mercedes, or maybe Michael Morrison or Dixon Machado (I hope not.) Maybe they will have their eye on another player in the Rule 5 draft, in which case they have to have a spot open to draft him.

Either way, I can’t see the Tigers tendering him a contract by November 30, so I think he is a goner. After making $ 2.1 million last year, that number will only go up. They need to let him go, preferably to an NL team, and wish him all the best.

Others that could be removed from the roster would be Wilk, Putkonen, maybe Stohr. Gotta believe Boesch is offered a contract, even though he’ll also make in the $ 2 mil range.

RR epitomized the “Hope & Dream”.
There realistically, is nowhere for him on this roster.
His value ended with his inability to play 2nd.

I like raburn as a person. I liked his time as a tiger but its time for change and he may do best to play elsewhere and start to consider his post baseball life in near future.

Yardbarker posted an article this morning about the Tigers. Of course when mentioned, Raburn’s name was misspelled. The other interesting thing was Boesch linked to the Mets in a trade. No real details were given, so this report might be more speculation than fact.

In another Yardbarker article, the Jay surplus of catching was discussed as an attractive situation for the Rangers, who have too little. Basically, the article noted only one guy could start for the Jays, presumably behind Arencibia, and Buck looked to be an expensive backup.

No mention was made of the Tigers possibly being interested in the Texas surplus.

Correction: Blue Jay surplus.

Correction: Basically, the article noted only one guy could start for the Jays and Buck looked to be an expensive backup, presumably behind Arencibia.

The Blue Jays are getting a lot of attention. A Yardbarker link to the Boston Herald has them in on Sanchez (as reported previously) and now Jackson. That staff could prove formidable considering they already acquired Buehrle and Jonson from the Marlins.

just to be clear, RR can’t play 2nd because Omar, Worth and Santiago all do it better and hit better. Which is saying alot really. And he can’t play OF because Hunter, Jackson, Garcia are all RHBs who can outplay him.
.
So the only question is: can he catch?

does anyone else sit around and relisten to the tigers games in the offseason? or am i alone on that one?

don’t anyone tell me what the outcome of the aug. 23rd game against the blue jays was…until like 4pm today. :p then lets talk about it like it was todays game.

Evan .. I was at that game. Don’t worry. It has a happy ending.
.
– Bob

tigers just released ryan.

If ryan was smart he’d go right to the marlins. I mean, he’ll be considered a vet and the fans won’t boo him. ever. because they don’t go to the games.

but i’m hearing cubs fans saying they’d love to see him play 3rd. lol

Raburtn’s best chance at a regular position is 3rd. I have always said that.
The ball is on you so quick at the hot corner. No time to think about it. That is part and parcel of RR’s difficulites in the field. The mor time he has to think about a baseball, be it a fly, a liner or a ground ball, the more chance of something odd happening.
He has a good arm, he has good reactions and he has a bat that seems idealized for a 3rd baseman.
I think he will end up at 3rd and I think he will have a decent year or two.
Bueno suerte Ryan.

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