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MLB 2012 Offseason: Diamondbacks Pick Up Option On Willie Bloomquist, Decline Option On Aaron Hill

The 2012 MLB offseason is officially underway as players and coaches alike start planning out moves in anticipation for next year. The Arizona Diamondbacks got right to work on Monday, making key decisions on certain players and learning about free agent decisions from some of their own players.

The Diamondbacks have decided to pick up the mutual option on catcher Henry Blanco and infielder Willie Bloomquist. Arizona also decided to decline options on left-handed pitcher Zach Duke and infielder Aaron Hill, who was acquired in a trade with the Toronto Blue Jays in late August. Hill's option, accounting for $8 million, is a little too high for the Diamondbacks and the team will try to negotiate a slightly cheaper contract with Hill for the coming seasons.

Four Diamondbacks have decided to pursue free agency: right-handed pitcher Jason Marquis (who also came over with the Aaron Hill trade) and infielders John McDonald, Xavier Nady and Lyle Overbay. All four players spent their first season with the Diamondbacks in 2011.

Arizona will take a good look at all of its free agent options before starting to consider its options with players. The Diamondbacks currently have 33 players on their 40-man roster and will have seven roster spots to fill as the offseason continues.