Seattle Mariners: Non-tender of Santana and Beckham made sense

The Seattle Mariners decided not to offer contracts to Domingo Santana or Tim Beckham and it’s entirely understandable why.

Monday was the deadline to tender major-league contracts for club-controlled players on the 40-man roster. In respect of the Seattle Mariners, what was most interesting was who they didn’t tender contracts for.

More specifically, the Mariners the Mariners decided to non-tender Domingo Santana and Tim Beckham. As a result, both players are now free agents.

It would be understandable if your first reaction was one of surprise, particularly in the case of Santana. He was one of the club’s best hitters during 2019, especially during the first few months of the season.

The outfielder ended the campaign with the best batting average on the club. And considering he missed 41 games through injury, he still finished second for the M’s in RBIs and tied for fourth in home runs.

In contrast however, Santana was poor in the outfield and never likely to improve. After being unable to trade him, the Mariners decided it was better to part ways rather than pay around $4.4 million in 2020 (as projected in arbitration).

The decision to let Beckham leave was more straightforward. An 80-game performance-enhancing drug suspension last season meant the writing was on the wall.

In truth though, even without the suspension there was already a belief the infielder was a candidate to be let go. An average defender at best, he was projected to make roughly $3 million in arbitration, which would have been tough to justify.

The rebuild of the Mariners continues in earnest, as they aim to become serious postseason contenders within the next three years. Expect a significant number of players to meet a similar fate to Santana and Beckham.

What is your take on the decision to non-tender Santana and Beckham? Do you agree with what the Seattle Mariners did, or can you make an argument against the moves? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

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