The parent Tigers have started making moves for the off-season, and their announcement Monday will make two players with ties to the Mud Hens free agents.
On Oct. 31 the Tigers outrighted the contracts of LHP Brad Thomas and C Omir Santos to Toledo. Since both are "six-year renewable options players" -- better known as six-year free-agents -- they can opt to become free agents on Thursday. That will allow then to sign with any major-league organization.
In the case of Santos, there is a possibility that he will resign with the Tigers. Detroit manager Jim Leyland likes his catch-and-throw abilities, meaning Leyland likes Santos's ability to call a game, work with pitchers, and throw out would-be basestealers.
Santos played in 11 games with Detroit this past season and hit .227 with no homers or RBIs. In 49 games with the Mud Hens, Santos batted .245 with two homers and 16 RBIs.
In the case of Thomas, I would be shocked if he resigned with the Tigers. There was a rift between the two sides when Detroit tried to designate Thomas for assignment in mid-July despite Thomas suffering from elbow problems. Eventually the Tigers returned Thomas to the 40-man roster, putting him on the disabled list for the rest of the season, but the damage was done.
"Obviously I like to treat people well, and I thought I had treated them well," Thomas said of the Tigers. "For things to turn out the way they almost turned out, that was unsettling for me."
Click here to read a story I wrote about the trouble between Thomas and the Tigers.
Thomas pitched in 12 games for Detroit and was 0-1 with a 9.00 ERA in 11 innings. During eight rehab appearances with the Mud Hens, the lefty was 0-1 with a 3.48 ERA.