One of the players who entered spring in a critical position was Adrian Houser. With his three option years gone, the Brewers was facing a position where he would have to make the roster or be exposed to waivers. Some of that stress on the team has been lifted now. Today, Adam McCalvy reported that the Brewers have been granted a fourth option year for Adrian Houser, allowing him to be sent to and from the minors for one more year.
All major league players on the 40-man roster are given three option years in their MLB careers. Options allow the team to send a player to and from the minors without being subjected to waivers. For every year the player spends 20 or more days in the minors, one option is used. After three option years are used, if the team wants to send the player to the minors again, the player would have to be removed from the 40-man roster and pass through waivers each time. However, in cases where a player loses an option year to injury or uses three options before five professional seasons are done, they can be granted a fourth option.
With Houser getting a fourth year, this gives the Brewers more flexibility in camp. Before, Houser had to make the team or be exposed to waivers. Now, Houser can be stashed in the minor leagues again, either as rotation depth or a backup pitcher for the bullpen. The Brewers did use Houser mostly in relief last season, as he made seven appearances covering 13.2 innings with a 3.75 FIP and 3.29 ERA. In the minors, he was used as a starter, making 21 starts between Colorado Springs and Biloxi, posting a 5.19 ERA in Triple-A and 4.73 ERA in Double-A. While he will try to make the team out of spring training, the team now has some protection in case he misses the roster.
Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference.