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David Lesky

I never had a chance. I was born into a family who loved baseball and the Royals, so I accordingly love baseball and the Royals. I just so happen to love to write also, which makes writing about the Royals for this site something that makes me happy each and every day. When I first started blogging, a fairly well known baseball writer told me to only do it until I'm unhappy doing it, but I don't see that coming any time soon.

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  1. 4

    David Lesky

    I believe the rules for DFA and the salary involved is different in the off-season and the Royals will be on the hook for, at most, 1/6 of Bonifacio’s salary at this point. I’d be more than surprised if he was a member of the 2014 Royals.

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    OK now I think I have some answers… Here is the explanation for DFA:

    Designated for assignment is a contractual term used in Major League Baseball. A player who is designated for assignment is immediately removed from the team’s 40-man roster, after which the team must either return the player to the 40-man roster within 10 days from the date of designation or make one of the following contractual moves:
    Place the player on waivers (which can only be done within the first 7 days of the 10-day period)
    Trade the player
    Release the player
    Outright the player from the 40-man roster into the Minor Leagues.

    Place the player on waivers = Typically a player is placed on waivers after being designated for assignment for the purpose of outrighting him to one of the club’s minor league teams. A player who is outrighted to the triple A is removed from the 40-man roster but is still paid according to the terms of his guaranteed contract. A player can only be outrighted once in his career without his consent. However, a player must clear waivers (that is, no other team may place a waiver claim on the player) to be sent to a minor league team. Also, if the player has five or more full years of major league service, he must give consent to be assigned to the minors. If the player withholds consent, the team must either release him or keep him on the major league roster. In either case, the player must continue to be paid under the terms of his contract.

    Trade the player = Once a player is designated for assignment, he may be traded.

    Release the player = 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, the amount paid by the signing team is usually a pro-rated portion of the Major League minimum salary).

    Outright from the 40-man roster = If the player clears waivers when being designated for assignment, they can most commonly be outrighted from the 40-man roster and play for any class in the Minor Leagues.

    Bonifacio has 5.066 years of service time so based on this, he can refuse assignment and be released. He can then sign for league minimum anywhere and Royals are on hook for remaining $3M. If Bonifacio did agree to be sent to AAA then he would still earn his $3.5M salary in the minors so that won’t happen.

    Royals have to put Bonifacio on waivers today if they want someone to claim him. If not, it appears to me the only choice is to reinstate him to 40 man roster. This looks to me like it was a fishing expedition to see if someone would trade for him and Bonifacio will be back on roster on Tuesday if no one does. And that may be unlikely considering any team can sign him for league minimum if they wait until Tuesday.

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    Sorry, Saturday is the 7 days of control for trading. 10 days would be Tuesday I think with 3 days on waivers.

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    Enjoyed the podcast this week. Most of it you reiterated here.

    One question on Bonifacio. I read if the Royals end up not finding a trade partner and release him then he can sign with any club for league minimum and Royals are on hook for the other $3M. Is this true?

    If so then I wonder if Bonifacio was DFA’d because they needed the room now, but with a plan that if they could not trade him, they return him to roster and waive someone else rather than give him his release. Guess will find out on Saturday when the 10 day period is up.

    Also understand that if he is not traded by Saturday then has to go through waivers as well and Royals would be on hook for 1/6 of his salary if that happens. This DFA, waiver, release system in off season is very confusing. Maybe you can clarify.

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