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The biggest and, perhaps, best name on this list is reliever Blake Treinen. He was non-tendered because he, essentially, had what Kyle Freeland had: a significant drop in results after a phenomenal 2018 season.
In 2018, Treinen was Oakland’s closer and he pitched to a 9-2 record with a 0.78 ERA in 68 games with 38 saves. He struck out 100 batters and only walked 21 in 80 1/3 innings and he also only allowed two home runs. Those numbers put him in historical levels considering that was the lowest ERA by any pitcher ever with at least 80 innings pitched and he became the first pitcher in MLB history to record 30+ saves, 100+ strikeouts, and a sub-1.00 ERA in the same season.
He was an All-Star, came in 6th in the AL Cy Young Award voting, and even came in 15th in AL MVP voting.
But in 2019, his walk rate more than doubled, his home run rate multiplied seven-fold (from 0.2 to 1.4 per nine innings), and he nearly doubled his hits allowed per nine innings. That resulted in a 4.91 ERA (5.14 FIP) and being removed from the closer’s role and, ultimately, being non-tendered.
He was projected to make $7.8 million in arbitration so he would be fairly expensive but if he could return to his 2018 form, that salary would be peanuts compared to what he’d be worth.