SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants declined to pick up the $10.5 million option on shortstop Edgar Renteria's 2011 contract, a move that might stun their new legion of fans but actually was a foregone conclusion. Renteria thus became a free agent and will receive a $500,000 buyout from the Giants, who remain eligible to sign him. Just this past Monday, Renteria belted a three-run homer in the Giants' World Series-clinching Game 5 victory over the Texas Rangers and earned Most Valuable Player honors for the 106th Fall Classic. He hit .412 (7-for-17) with two home runs, six RBIs and six runs scored against Texas.
But Renteria, 35, played a career-low 72 games this season while thrice going on the disabled list with different injuries each time (groin, hamstring, biceps). He started only 62 games at shortstop, compared with Juan Uribe's 96. Renteria's fluctuating health has led him to contemplate retirement. The five-time All-Star said Wednesday that he's still weighing the issue. "We're not addressing our 2011 roster right now as much as we're making a decision that is more or less expected by Edgar and most fans," Giants vice president of baseball operations Bobby Evans said. A five-time All-Star and two-time Gold Glove winner, Renteria was much maligned by the public and media after signing a two-year, $18.5 million contract and hitting a career-worst .250 in 2009. As it turned out, he played through shoulder and elbow ailments. Renteria, who improved his average to .276 this year and is a .287 lifetime hitter, commanded respect among the Giants that transcended statistics or awards. "He's a leader among leaders and a professional in every way," Evans said. "We wouldn't be where we are without him."
Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.