The Rays will have 10 days to work out a trade for Molina or release him.
Molina, 39, has been with Tampa Bay since 2012. He started 70 games for the Rays last season and hit just .178 with a .417 OPS while throwing out just 24 percent of attempted basestealers.
A 15-year veteran, Molina has also played for the Chicago Cubs, Los Angeles Angels, New York Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays in his career. He's the brother of former MLB catcher Bengie Molina and current St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina.
Molina's absence from the roster next season means Ryan Hanigan will likely receive the bulk of the team's catching duties.
It's already been a busy offseason for the Rays. The team traded pitcher Jeremy Hellickson to the Diamondbacks and picked up the options of reliever Joel Peralta and utilityman Ben Zobrist earlier this month.
In October, longtime vice president Andrew Friedman left to become the president of the Los Angeles Dodgers, and manager Joe Maddon exercised an out clause in his contract the following week before agreeing to become the manager of the Chicago Cubs.
The Rays recently announced their initial list of 10 candidates for the open manager job.
- Ben Estes