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Giants decline Cruz's option

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Giants decline Cruz's option

Postby Mad'sWife » Fri Oct 24, 2003 7:21 am

10/22/2003 4:03 PM ET
Giants decline Cruz's option
By Rich Draper /

Jose Cruz, Jr. misplayed a fly by Jeff Conine in Game 3 of the NLDS. (David Adame/AP)

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants, as expected, have declined to pick up their $4 million option on right-fielder Jose Cruz Jr., a defensive star for the club this past season. Cruz will get $300,000 in the buyout, general manager Brian Sabean announced on Wednesday.
The 29-year-old outfielder batted only .250 after a blistering 10-game start (.375) but still hit 20 homers -- second on the team -- and drove in 68 runs while starting in a team-high 151 games this past season. His defense was outstanding, as he set a San Francisco record with 18 outfield assists and made spectacular catches in right field.

Money was a significant issue in not re-signing Cruz, with the Giants hoping to slash their nearly $85 million budget by about $8.5 million. Cruz also hit only .216 in May and struck out a team-high 121 times.

Sabean has stated that right field is a critical area for the Giants and that he would comb the free agent marketplace in the offseason, adding it had quality players available.

Jose Cruz Jr. / RF
Height: 6'0"
Weight: 200
Bats/Throws: S/R

Player page
Hit chart
Giants site

Cruz may win a Gold Glove for his exploits this year, but what fans will remember is his dropped fly ball in Game 3 of the National League Division Series that helped the Marlins pull out an 11-inning, 4-3 victory. But the Giants also left 18 runners on base in the contest.
The Giants could open right field to veteran Jeffrey Hammonds or outfielder/infielder Pedro Feliz, who showed surprising power this season.

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Postby DK » Sat Oct 25, 2003 9:33 am

No surprise there... it was mentioned in the "Free Agent Watch" earlier.
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