Ah, nothing like cruising around for cheap relief arms with upside. In order to create room for the newly signed Chan Ho Park, the Yankees have DFA’d 29-year-old reliever Edwar Ramirez. You can read the Wikepedia article on the process of DFA, but the meat-and-potatoes lies here:
If a player is not traded, and clears waivers, he may be released from the team. The player is then a free agent and may sign with any team, including the team that just released him. The team that releases him is responsible for the salary the player is owed, less what he is paid by the team that signs him. In practice, that amount is usually a pro-rated portion of the Major League minimum salary.
A quick word on Ramirez and why he might interest the Giants. Ramirez is a 6’3″ right-handed reliever out of the Yankees organization that has also spent time in his earlier years with the Angels. He works off of a 88-89 mph fastball that he’s thrown 53% of the time in the majors and a plus-changeup (that’s sometimes been called a “Bugs Bunny Change”) that he’s thrown a hair under 38% of the time. He has a slider but it’s usage has been minimal. By FanGraphs pitch-type linear weights, his changeup has been an above average pitch for him in his 98.1 career innings in the majors — over that time-frame his changeup has been worth a total of +7.6 runs above average. He sells the change really well and it’s his best pitch. He’s not a hard-thrower, but his fastball and changeup combo has devastated minor league hitters.
Ramirez’s career minor league numbers:
Note: some of his years cover different levels and leagues. To get a more specific breakdown of Ramirez’s number in the minors, check out his BB-Ref page.
Yup, those numbers should be enough to interest any team. Ramirez hasn’t had the same level of success in the majors as the minors. He’s still had the ability to K hitters with a career K/9 in the majors of 10.62, but his BB/9 at 5.13 is well above his minor league control numbers. CHONE is projecting him as a 4.37 FIP reliever for the 2010 season — making him more of a back-end bullpen guy than a late inning reliever. But Ramirez does offer plenty of upside, especially in the NL. His minor league numbers are fantastic and a smart team needing to round out their bullpen should check in on Edwar. If the Giants picked him up, I’d rank rank him above Brandon Medders, and maybe even Waldis Joaquin or Dan Runzler.