Denard Span didn’t play last season and he says he is currently retired over standards about what he accepts he’s worth.
The veteran outfielder was a free agent before last season after the Seattle Mariners declined his $12 million alternatives for the 2019 season. He disclosed to MLBTradeRumors that he got just the least proposals during the 2018-19 offseason and “once I didn’t sign a contract going into the 2020 season, that was it for me.”
He told the site he didn’t get offers until spring preparing had started in 2019 and when the offers came he was disinterested.
“I’m a man of principles, and when those principles aren’t met, I can’t go along with it,” Span told the website. “… I honestly recognize that I’m not the player that I was when I was in D.C. or when I was in Minnesota. But, I still know that I have value. I’m not a center fielder or premier player anymore, but that doesn’t mean I can’t help a ballclub win a championship or win games. I’m not the $12MM player anymore, but from what I did [in 2018], that doesn’t tell me I’m worth $1MM or worth $1.5MM or worth league minimum. I got an offer for the league minimum. It was just unreal.”
Span, who is married and has two kids under 3 years of age, said the offers he got didn’t legitimize him being away from his family.
Span, 36, hit .261 with 11 home runs and 58 RBIs in what was his final season in 2018. He has a career average of .281 with 71 home runs, 72 triples, and 490 RBIs in 11 seasons. He completed tied for the National League lead in hits with 184 out of 2014 for the Washington Nationals and twice led the class in significantly increases when he tied for the American League lead with 10 of every 2009 and led the NL with 11 for the Nationals in 2013.
“At the end of the day, I want people to get that I didn’t play because of principles. Point blank,” he told the website.