The Cubs are next in our arbitration eligibles series...
- First time: Geovany Soto
- Second time: Carlos Marmol, Jeff Baker, Sean Marshall, Angel Guzman, Tom Gorzelanny, Koyie Hill
- Third time: None
Soto rebounded in a big way heading up to his first bout with arbitration. He has an All-Star appearance and the Rookie of the Year award under his belt from 2008, and has a career .268 average with 54 home runs, 196 RBIs, and 153 runs in 378 games. I think he'll fall short of Russell Martin's first-time reward of $3.9MM, but should easily top $2MM.
Marmol, working from a $2.125MM base, padded his resume with 38 saves, a 2.55 ERA, and a ridiculous 138 strikeouts. He'll jump past $4MM. Marshall's at $950K this year and pitched quite well in his first full season as a reliever.
Baker earned $975K this year as a utility infielder and did enough to be tendered a contract. The Cubs will also want to keep Gorzelanny, working from an $800K salary, in the mix.
Guzman and Hill may be expendable. Guzman had serious shoulder surgery in March, so the Cubs may not even want to pay him $825K again. Hill continues to be a credible defensive backup catcher. His lack of offense would keep his salary down, but the Cubs could look elsewhere.