Four Non-Tenders the Brewers Should Think About

August 10, 2010: Tony Gwynn  center fielder for the Padres in action during the game between the Pittsburgh Pirates and the San Diego Padres at PETCO park in San Diego, California.

MLB Trade Rumors counts 50 players that were non-tendered on Thursday. The question now for Doug Melvin — ever the bargain-hunter — is if there are any names worth pursuing.· Looking over the list myself, here are four non-tenders that I thought might be worth looking into:

OF Tony Gwynn
Non-Tendered By: San Diego
2010 Salary: $419.8k
I still have hope for Carlos Gomez, slim as it may be, but doesn’t TGJ look a lot better after we spent a year watching Gomez? I joked that Gwynn is Carlos Gomez without power, but a little home run pop is all Gomez really has over our old friend. Gwynn was non-tendered after hitting just .204/.304/.287 last season, but his BABIP was absurdly low at .236, and he’s just a year removed from hitting .270/.350/.344. Comparing him to Gomez, his BB% is over twice that of Gomez, he strikes out quite a bit less, he covers much more ground in center, and he hits left-handed. If you’re looking for a guy who could be injury insurance for Lorenzo Cain, Gwynn wouldn’t be a terrible idea. Definitely a guy Roenicke might have fun with, and he could call up Bud Black for an honest assessment.

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OF Jack Cust
Non-Tendered By: Oakland
2010 Salary: $2.65MM
Doug Melvin says he wants power off the bench, and if the interest in Eric Hinske was any indication, it helps if you’re left-handed. Well, there probably isn’t a non-tender with more power than Cust. Of course, he’s pretty much a man without a position, even worse in the corners than Ryan Braun and Corey Hart. He’d probably be nothing more than a pinch-hitter for a National League team, and while his OBP numbers would be attractive as a pinch-hitter, he’s pretty clearly not the type of player the Brewers will be looking at with Ron Roenicke managing the team.

P Manny Delcarmen
Non-Tendered By: Colorado
2010 Salary: $905k
Delcarmen has had a rough couple of years, but once was a promising arm out of Boston’s bullpen. He got chased out of town last season and finished the year with the Rockies, but it wasn’t that long ago that his stuff was really good — his fastball was 11.3 runs above average in 2008. Part of the reason Todd Coffey was let go was because the Brewers already have quite a few promising young relievers already, but I wouldn’t mind seeing the team take a flier on a guy like Delcarmen, either.

P John Maine
Non-Tendered By: New York (N)
2010 Salary: $3.3MM
You may remember the “Corey Hart for John Maine” trade rumors that were swirling at this time last year. It seemed like a decent idea at the time — Maine was a decent buy-low option, while Hart was a possible non-tender himself last year. After watching this past season, it’s probably safe to say it’s a good thing the Brewers didn’t make that move. Maine is available on the open market now, coming off shoulder surgery he had in July. His best season was 2007 — 191 IP, 3.91 ERA (4.18 FIP), 8.48 K/9, 2.7 WAR — but he’d be a decent buy-low option that could end up fitting nicely in a #4 role. I’d be more interested in kicking the tires on him than signing Carl Pavano.

Obviously each player his his flaws, but he’d still be with his team if he didn’t. The important thing is that each brings something to the table that could help the team if they’re put in a situation to succeed. Looking at the list of non-tenders linked above, are there any players you’d want to see the Brewers take a chance on?

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