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(Non-)Tender is the Night

10pm Arizona time today marks the non-tender deadline: the last chance for teams to offer contracts to unsigned players on their 40-man roster.  If they opt not to do so, players become free agents, and can sign with any club. It looks like the Diamondbacks will offer deals to all their players in this category, such as Conor Jackson, but might there be  a chance for the team to pick someone up, released by another club? There are usually some useful pieces that get cut loose, and it can be a chance to pick someone up for a relative song.

Tim Dierkes has put up a list of potential non-tenders at MLBTradeRumors.com. Some of these will certainly be given contracts (his list contains Jackson, and you can take it to the bank that the team will not let him walk away from Arizona), and others we might not want to touch with someone else's ten-foot bargepole. However, after the jump, we'll take a look at some interesting names in the positions the D-backs need help, on on whom we may want to kick the tires if they become available.

  • Jeremy Accardo. Over the past three seasons, Accardo has an ERA+ of 160 for the Blue Jays, though admittedly, he only threw 37 major-league innings in 2008 and 2009 combined, and spent most of last year in Triple-A [posting an ERA of 3.00 in 27 appearances]. A local boy - born in Mesa - he could be a useful arm to add to the Diamondbacks bullpen.
  • Garrett Atkins. Purple Row says he has been officially non-tendered by the Rockies. Last year was a disaster for him - OPS+ of just 66 - but his career numbers are still solid. He's only 30, is a career .289 hitter, averaging 20 homers per season, and even adjusting for Coors, has a career OPS+ of 102. Of particular interest to Arizona because he murders LHP, so could be a nice platoon-mate for Allen at first-base. 
  • Taylor Buchholz. While we're pillaging Coors Field, maybe they'll let Buchholz slip through. This may seem unlikely, since he was lights-out in the Rockies bullpen last season, posting an ERA of 2.17 over 63 games. Normally, there'd be little chance of that kind of performance being non-tendered, but the Rockies have to find an awful lof of arbitration money for 2010.
  • Jack Cust. A former Diamondbacks' top-draft pick, I should stress there's absolutely no chance of us taking on Mr. Hands of Stone. But I just think it would be amusing to have the  2008 and 2009 K leaders from both leagues playing on the Diamondbacks next year...
  • Ryan Garko. While he flopped badly with the Giants down the stretch, he has produced four straight season of 100+ OPS+. He's another who kills southpaws - Garko's career line vs. LHP is .313/.392/.495, though he's never going to win any Gold Gloves at first. Will probably still be in SF: Grant from McCC reckons, "If the Giants start 2010 with Garko as the starting first baseman, that's just fine."
  • Kelly Johnson. Like Atkins, a poor 2009 derailed what was looking like a decent career - an OPS+ of 108 prior to last season is excellent for a second-baseman, and he has a good defensive reputation as wel;. Ken Rosenthal reports that the Braves are trying to trade Johnson, but will non-tender him if a deal can not be worked out before the deadline.
  • John Maine. 28-years old, ERA+ of 106 in his four seasons with the Mets. Should be a no-brainer to keep that guy in the Big Apple, right? Apparently not. New York have been dangling him in trade talks, such as with the Brewers for outfielder Corey Hart. Still, even if that falls through, you'd have to be stupid to let him walk away. However, we are talking about the Mets...
  • Brandon Medders. A tale of two Brandons, both former D-backs who'll be aged 30 next Opening Day. B. Lyon, career ERA+ of 111, gets a three-year, $15m deal from the Astros. B. Medders, career ERA+ 136, is a possible non-tender candidate from the Giants. Seems fairly certain he will be offered a contract though, and the Giants would be mental not to do so.
  • Chien-Ming Wang. Perhaps the most intriguing name on the list, this would have seemed unthinkable last year, with career numbers of 54-20 and an ERA+ of 117. However, Wang imploded - his first three starts led to 23 earned runs in just six IP, and he had season-ending shoulder surgery on July 30. Some team will offer the sinkerballer an incentive-laden contract: 50/50 whether its a bargain or a bust.