This was a virtual formality we knew from the day they signed, but it’s official today -- both Yasmani Grandal and Mike Moustakas are declining their halves of their mutual options to become free agents.
C Yasmani Grandal and INF Mike Moustakas have elected free agency. Both had mutual options.— Milwaukee Brewers (@Brewers) November 1, 2019
1B/OF Tyler Austin and INF/OF Cory Spangenberg have been outrighted to Triple-A San Antonio and elected free agency. pic.twitter.com/nuh1XfGIzZ
Jon Heyman reported Grandal’s plans to opt out yesterday, and rumors are already pointing to a potentially hot free agent market for the All-Star catcher. The Brewers are expected to be in on a potential multi-year contract for him, but so are the division rival Cincinnati Reds as they continue to assemble pieces for a possible return to playoff contention in 2020.
Grandal, who signed a one-year deal last offseason with the Brewers, is likely to land lucrative multi-year contract this time around. Said one rival executive: “The gamble paid off. Big time.” https://t.co/wEEuMv4N0P— Robert Murray (@ByRobertMurray) November 1, 2019
Of course, Grandal was also expecting plenty of suitors last winter before David Stearns and the Brewers swooped in with their offer when he wasn’t finding an offer to his liking. He’ll look for a multi-year deal at or above the $18 million he earned in 2019.
The same goes for Moustakas, who will hope the third time is the charm for his big free agent contract. Still one of the best options out there at third base, Moustakas will be looking for some long-term security after playing the last couple seasons year-to-year, settling for a below-market $10 million one-year deal in 2019.
Grandal ranked second among catchers in the majors in 2019 with a fWAR of 5.2, trailing only Philadelphia’s J.T. Realmuto. Moustakas was good for 2.8 fWAR but will be a possible fallback option for any team that misses out on Anthony Rendon or Josh Donaldson.
This is just the start of what could be a lot of roster turnover for the Brewers this winter — as noted in the tweet from the Brewers above, the team also outrighted Cory Spangenberg and Tyler Austin off the roster, with both electing free agency. A number of others also filed for free agency today. Combine that with the slew of contract options and arbitration decisions to be made in the next month or two, and there could be plenty of new faces in Maryvale next spring.