Los Angeles Angels catcher Max Stassi will not play the rest of the season as he tends to a family medical issue, the team announced Sunday. Stassi has been placed on the restricted list and will not be paid or receive service time during the season's final month.
Here is the team's statement:
Max Stassi has been placed on the restricted list effective September 2, 2023. Max informed the Angels that while he is in a position to resume activities to return to MLB, he has voluntarily chosen not to do so for the remainder of the 2023 season as a result of a serious family medical issue.
Out of respect for Max and his family, the Angels will not have any further comment. The Angels wish Max and his family all the best.
Stassi, 32, suffered a hip injury in spring training and has not played this season while recovering and dealing with an undisclosed family matter. He was on the injured list all season -- thus being paid and accruing service time -- up until he was placed on the restricted list Saturday.
A year ago Stassi slashed .180/.267/.303 with nine home runs in 375 plate appearances. The 10-year veteran joined the Angels in a trade with the AL West rival Houston Astros at the 2019 trade deadline. Stassi hit a career high 13 home runs in 2021 and he has long been regarded as a strong defender behind the plate.
The Angels signed Stassi to three-year extension worth $17.5 million in March 2022. The deal pays him $7 million this season and he will forfeit approximately $1.16 million in salary while on the restricted list. That is enough to get the Angels under the $233 million competitive balance tax (CBT) threshold, according to The Athletic.
Earlier this week the Angels put six rental players -- Lucas Giolito, Randal Grichuk, Dominic Leone, Reynaldo López, Matt Moore, Hunter Renfroe -- on waivers to shed salary. , and GM Perry Minasian confirmed the Angels were still over the CBT threshold after the waiver activity. Stassi going on the restricted list gets them under.
It was reported owner Arte Moreno, who has exceeded the CBT threshold once (in 2004) since purchasing the team in 2003,. The Angels would have been taxed 20% on every dollar over the $233 million threshold, and their tax rate would have increased to 30% next year.
More importantly, going over the CBT threshold would have meant receiving a compensation draft pick after the fourth round in the event Shohei Ohtani leaves as a free agent. Now they will receive a compensation pick after the second round. That said, .
It should be noted the CBT payroll is not calculated until after the season and the Angels could go back over the threshold. If, for example, a player goes on the injured list, they will have to call up a replacement, and both the injured player and replacement count against payroll. For now, the Angels are under the CBT threshold with four weeks to play.
The Angels enter play Sunday with a 64-74 record and 11.5 games out of a wild-card spot. They have not been to the postseason since 2014 and have never posted a winning record in Ohtani's six seasons.