Wednesday, March 19, 2008

What to do with Cruceta once the season starts?

There is a lot of talk about what to do with Francisco Cruceta as soon as the season starts. Clearly, even if he got into the country right now, he probably wouldn't be able to pitch right away. What can the Tigers do in this case? Cruceta is out of options and can't be sent to the minor leagues without going through waivers.

Enter, the restricted list. The Collective Bargaining Agreement states the restricted list is for players "either failing to report to his Club or failing to contract with it." The most recent Tiger to be placed on the restricted list was Neifi Perez, when he was suspended last season. In a more relevant case, Wil Ledezma got stuck in Venezuela during the All Star Break last summer while with the Braves. He had infamously damaged his visa and passport while doing his laundry. During that time, the Braves freed up a roster spot by placing him on the restricted list.

So long as he is out of the country, Francisco Cruceta likely can be on the restricted list and does not have to be exposed to waivers.

edit: Before typing this, I didn't see that Jason Beck had reported this yesterday.

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