Padres near decisions on arbitration-eligibles
Rzepczynski, Wallace, Middlebrooks among candidates to become free agents
SAN DIEGO -- Before heading to the Winter Meetings next week in Nashville, the Padres have a few roster decisions to make a move on.
The team currently has seven arbitration-eligible players on the roster, and while some rate as no-brainers to return, a few others don't.
The Padres could non-tender left-handed reliever Marc Rzepczynski and infielders Brett Wallace and Will Middlebrooks.
A player who isn't offered a contract by 8:59 p.m. PT Wednesday will go into the free-agent pool. If he is tendered, he's locked into the 2016 season at a figure to be determined later, either in arbitration or negotiations.
Rzepczynski, acquired from the Indians on July 31, went 0-1 with a 7.36 ERA in 27 games and 14 2/3 innings. Opponents hit .309 against him, and overall lefties hit .255 against during his time with the Indians and the Padres.
MLB Trade Rumors had Rzepczynski potentially earning $3 million in 2016.
Wallace, who signed with the Padres last winter as a Minor League free agent, hit .302 in 64 games with the team after being recalled from Triple-A El Paso on June 19. He hit five home runs and drove in 16 runs. Four of those home runs were as a pinch-hitter.
Middlebrooks, the team's Opening Day starter at third base, hit .212 in 83 games with nine home runs and 29 RBIs. He was optioned to El Paso on July 21 where he hit .255. He wasn't added to the roster in September.
Other Padres players who are arbitration-eligible include pitchers Tyson Ross and Andrew Cashner, first baseman Yonder Alonso and catcher Derek Norris.