TORONTO – Darren Oliver remains undecided about pitching another season, even after the Toronto Blue Jays exercised a US$3-million option for 2013 on the left-hander.
“He’s not sure at all and he’s in no rush to make a decision,” Jeff Frye, his agent, said Thursday. “Them picking up the option was a formality, something we anticipated.”
The move, exercised Wednesday, comes with no risk to the Blue Jays, who avoid a $500,000 buyout and would be glad to take the 42-year-old back after he posted an ERA of 2.06 over 62 games in 2012.
Should Oliver retire, he forfeits the salary, while if he chooses to come back, the Blue Jays control his rights.
On the final weekend of the season Oliver spoke about his desire to be home more often with his wife and two sons, and sounded like a man leaning toward retirement.
CREATIVE ACCOUNTING: The Blue Jays also held a $3 million option on Rajai Davis that they declined for a $500,000 buyout Wednesday before re-signing the outfielder for $2.5 million.
Given that both ways Davis ends up at $3 million, what was the point?
Declining the option allowed the Blue Jays to count the buyout toward their 2012 payroll, so the hit for 2013 is only $2.5 million. That saving will cover the salary of one 0-3 service time player next year in a clever bit of accounting.
ANOTHER HIT: The Miami Marlins named Mike Redmond their manager Thursday, making him the latest member of the Blue Jays organization to find a new home.
The manager of single-A Dunedin last season wasn’t in the running to replace John Farrell in Toronto, but was considered a front-runner to take Ozzie Guillen’s place from the outset.
Redmond began coaching with the Blue Jays in 2011 after a solid 13-year career as a backup catcher for the Marlins, Minnesota and Cleveland.
He joins Farrell, first base coach Torey Lovullo, and third base coach Brian Butterfield, all of whom have departed to Boston, plus advanced scout Kevin Cash, who will serve as bullpen coach in Cleveland, in finding work elsewhere.
DYSON DONE: Right-hander Sam Dyson was the only Blue Jays prospect in the Arizona Fall League named to the Rising Stars Game, but he won’t take part in it having reached his innings limit, according assistant GM Tony LaCava.
Dyson logged 74 innings between single-A Dunedin and double-A New Hampshire this past season, while adding 0.2 more in two appearances with the Blue Jays plus 7.2 over seven games with the Salt River Rafters of the AFL.
The 24-year-old made his professional debut this season having recovered from the ligament replacement surgery on his right elbow he underwent after being chosen in the fourth round of the 2010 draft.