According to recent reports, he plans on using that clause, creating another need for the already complicated Yankees offseason.
He has every right to enjoy the clauses stipulated on his contract, though, and will look for the best possible deal for himself and his family.
Having finished the 2022 campaign with a strong postseason, 32 home runs and a 132 wRC+ in the regular season, Rizzo likely earned himself one last multi-year deal.
He is likely to pursue a two or three-year deal depending on his market.
Without the uncertainties of the lockout, contenders should also be more eager to spend, and the competitive balance tax (CBT) threshold is also going up next year.
In other words, everything is set for Rizzo to seek a long-term deal, whether it’s with the Yankees or with another organization.
The Yankees surely would like him back, and will be among the teams interested in signing him.
However, there will be other suitors.
“Anthony Rizzo is expected to decline his player option, making him a free agent this offseason,” The Game Day MLB tweeted, with a graphic.
Anthony Rizzo is expected to decline his player option, making him a free agent this offseason 👀🍿 pic.twitter.com/C6zLWhgzcE
— The Game Day MLB (@TheGameDayMLB) October 25, 2022
What Does The Future Have In Store For Rizzo?
The graph has a question: “Where will he play next season”? and shows four logos: the Yankees, the Miami Marlins, the Boston Red Sox, and the Cleveland Guardians.
He would make perfect sense for the Guardians, a contending team in need of an impact bat or two.
He would send Josh Naylor to the outfield or to the designated hitter spot and greatly improve Cleveland’s lineup.
The Marlins make sense too, but they are not contenders at the moment and will need to offer a lot to entice him.
The Red Sox could contend with the right moves and could be players for Rizzo.
We would add the Chicago Cubs, a place he knows and loves and they want to return to relevancy, who need a first baseman and have money to spend.
The Yankees should be seen as the favorites to re-sign him, though.