2011 Contract Issues: Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pirates face one contractual option after the season.  For closer Octavio Dotel, they can choose a $4.5MM salary or a $500K buyout.  Dotel's strikeout and walk rates have been typical so far, but he's allowed 15 hits and three home runs in 9.3 innings.

Akinori Iwamura, Brendan Donnelly, and Bobby Crosby will also be eligible for free agency after the season.  They're earning a total of $7.2MM this year.  If Dotel's option is declined, the Pirates will have $11.2MM coming off the books.

Increases to players under contract are light, with a total of $2.8MM.  The Pirates have a big arbitration class though.  First-time candidates include Joel Hanrahan, Lastings Milledge, Andy LaRoche, Delwyn Young, and possibly Ross OhlendorfD.J. Carrasco and Jack Taschner could be second-timers.  Zach Duke and Ronny Cedeno are third-time candidates, while Ryan Church and Javier Lopez fit into the fourth-time class.  There will be non-tenders in the mix, but it appears that the Pirates will have to raise payroll to retain all their key players.  That shouldn't be a problem, since their Opening Day payroll was only $39MM. 

Thanks to Cot's Baseball Contracts for the info.