One of the more popular questions I’m regularly asked involves player options.  What are they?  How do they work?  Who has them and who doesn’t?

From Baseball America: “When a player is on a Major League club’s 40-man roster and in the minor leagues, he is on ‘optional assignment.’ Players have three options and may be sent up or down as many times as the club chooses within those seasons but will only be charged with one option per season. When a player is ‘out of options,’ it means he’s been on a 40-man roster during at least three different seasons and in his fourth pro season or later, he will have to clear irrevocable waivers in order to be sent down.”

If you’re wondering which Reds players are “out of options,” they are:

Jose Arredondo
Bronson Arroyo
Homer Bailey
Bill Bray
Miguel Cairo
Carlos Fisher
Juan Francisco
Nick Masset
Brandon Phillips
Edinson Volquez


Last week, the Reds added six players to their 40-man roster.  All of those players who were added to the roster would’ve been eligible for next month’s Rule 5 Draft.

The Rule 5 Draft is scheduled for December 8 during the Winter Meetings in Dallas…any player eligible for the Rule 5 Draft who is not protected on a Major League 40-man roster may be selected by another team…eligibility for the draft depends on the player’s age during the signing season of his first contract…generally, players who sign at age 19 or older are under a club’s control for 4 years, while players who sign at age 18 or younger are under a club’s control for 5 years…after the rosters are submitted, no team can promote a minor league player to its 40-man roster until after the Rule 5 Draft, though teams can remove players from their rosters to make room for a Rule 5 Draft selection.

Please note the qualifications of the Rule 5 Draft are based on calendar years, not contract years.  For example, recently added 40-man roster players Didi Gregorius and Donald Lutz both signed in 2007.  Even though they made their professional debuts in 2008, each would have been eligible for the upcoming Rule 5 Draft because they have been “under the club’s control” for 5 years (2007-2011). 


This is how Reds Director of Brisk Walking Zach Bonkowski counts down to Redsfest…

 …with photos of adorable kittens!  Awww, Zach! 


And just because…remember the SkyRosa?


Finally, we here at Better Off Red are saddened and stunned to learn of the passing of Mariners outfielder Greg Halman.  Our thoughts are with his family, friends and fans.


More later.  Don’t forget to send in your Redsfest Haikus!

Expect good news,



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