American League Free Agent Arbitration Decisions

23 American League free agents were offered arbitration on November 23rd.  Four of those - Joaquin Benoit, John Buck, Victor Martinez, and Javier Vazquez - already have new contract agreements.  Current free agent Kevin Gregg has chosen to decline.  The remaining 18 AL free agents offered arbitration will have their decisions noted here and in our tracker.


73 Responses to American League Free Agent Arbitration Decisions Leave a Reply

  1. Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

    Wow. Put it this way, the Rays are kind of going to have a pretty awesome ’11 draft.

    • slider32 5 years ago

      They just lost their entire pullben, only 3% of those draft picks will ever make it.

      • slider32 5 years ago

        I should say Bullpen.

      • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

        I don’t get what you’re trying to say…

        • slider32 5 years ago

          Only 3% of draft choices make it to the majors. The Rays lost their whole Bullpen which is not easy to replace!

          • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

            Yeah but what gives dude? Do you already know who they are going to pick? That 3% of the whole draft might be all Rays players…They could all be stars…

      • vtadave 5 years ago

        How do you get 3%?

        If the Rays sign none of these guys, that’s eight extra picks by my count. (Edit: or is it 9 or 10?) Even if only one makes it (not happening given how high the picks are), that’s 12.5% right there.

        FAIL.

        • slider32 5 years ago

          How many first round picks are as good down the road as Soriano,Balfour, and Benoit.

          • JayTeam 5 years ago

            From the ’02 draft bottom 15 1st rounders: Nick Swisher, Cole Hamels, Matt Cain. Also pick 44 Joey Votto, 57 Jon Lester and 64 Brian McCann. Plus the same number of lesser players like Broxton, Span etc in the same range.

          • $1529282 5 years ago

            Because Benoit and Balfour have such dominant track records throughout their Major League tenure…?

    • Pretty awesome ’11 draft, yes. Pretty mediocre ’11 season though as they will have NO bullpen.

      • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

        Yes, but the whole point of the draft is to put a lineup on the field 3/4 years later…They are setting up for the future and very well at that.

        • In my opinion, their window to win it all has passed. They will be without a decent bullpen and their lineup has been hurt by Crawford and Pena leaving. They will have to make the whole team back up and I’m not doubting that they can’t do it again but their fan base has escalated the last several years and now those fans are going to be dissapointed when they play .500 baseball next year.

          • slider32 5 years ago

            I agree, the Rays missed their window, even though this is the only way they can compete.

          • MaineSox 5 years ago

            So if they already missed their window what good is a bullpen going to do them next season? If they have already missed their window as you say, then the only way a smaller market team such as the Rays opens themselves another window is through drafting and development and their ’11 draft has the potential to be outstanding. I say Bravo.

          • I said their window to win it all, I never said they couldn’t snag a wildcard berth in 2011 if they had their bullpen still….but they don’t…so guess what, they will be a .500 team next year. Nothing like the Rays of the past 2 years.

          • I said their window to win it all, I never said they couldn’t snag a wildcard berth in 2011 if they had their bullpen still….but they don’t…so guess what, they will be a .500 team next year. Nothing like the Rays of the past 2 years.

          • well they probably dont agree that their window is closed. they will put their faith in jennings to be carl crawford 2.0 and a couple young guys out in the pen. seems like grasping at straws a little, but at least they are stocking up on picks again.

          • well they probably dont agree that their window is closed. they will put their faith in jennings to be carl crawford 2.0 and a couple young guys out in the pen. seems like grasping at straws a little, but at least they are stocking up on picks again.

          • Tko11 5 years ago

            They really have to move that team…they deserve some fans.

      • penpaper 5 years ago

        Not entirely. Only Balfour and Soriano are pitchers that will be hard to replace. Choate is a LOOGY. Easy to find one of those. Qualls can’t control his sinker. Obviously, it’ll be impossible to replace Crawford’s presence in 2011 but Hawpe is nothing special.

        I forgot about Benoit but it was doubtful he’ll put up a season like 2010 ever again. Rays made the smart move to not overpay.

        • diesel2410 5 years ago

          Benoit?

          • penpaper 5 years ago

            I edited him in. Doubtful that he would continue the success he had in 2010. Not worth it for what the Tigers overpaid for.

        • jwredsox 5 years ago

          The Rays bullpen lost 271 innings with a 2.68 ERA. That’s like losing a cy young pitcher and a top closer.

      • TwinsVet 5 years ago

        Great bullpens rise and fall with unpredictable speed and spontaneity. Relievers are incredibly fickle.

  2. wild05fan 5 years ago

    They might have a solid ass rotation, but if they don’t find a way to revamp that bullpen, it’s going to cost them a ton. Unfortunately they might’ve missed their 3 year window to win a championship. I just don’t see any kind of major deal coming their way, and the lineup is going to be very subpar w/o Crawford and Pena.

    • $5427573 5 years ago

      I agree, it seems like they will be weaker in 2011, but with their prospects and upcoming draft picks they are going to be a perennial contender in the AL East.

  3. diesel2410 5 years ago

    The Rays’ bullpen stands at….Hellickson. Such a stud

    • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

      Matt Bush and Cory Wade as well.

      • diesel2410 5 years ago

        Oh you got my heart beating

        • shysox 5 years ago

          Andy Sonnanstine, Lance Cormier, Mike Ekstrom, Cory Wade, and maybe Jake McGee could all be part of very mediocre Rays bullpen in 2011. I think the Rays are in pretty decent shape if they go and trade Shields for a guy like Chris Davis or Garret Jones, and maybe they could trade Bartlett for McClellan and/or Motte or Bartlett for Sergio Romo.. or one trade I’ll do with the Rays is Carlos Quentin, Tyler Flowers, Eduardo Escobar and cash for Matt Garza. It would certainly help both teams. Now nothing I said will ever happen, but hey, just for the heck of it.

          • That deal wouldn’t be accepted by the White Sox, not even close.

          • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

            Actually, I think that’s a huge overpayment on the Rays part…Flowers isn’t much, Quentin isn’t that good, and Escobar is overrated.

          • Carlos Quentin is a power threat to any part of the field and will have the HRs and RBIs at the end of the year. White Sox like HR hitters and I’d expect them to keep him.

          • Carlos Quentin is a power threat to any part of the field and will have the HRs and RBIs at the end of the year. White Sox like HR hitters and I’d expect them to keep him.

          • Clearly your one sided fan, Flowers is still young and has ALOT of potential, Quentins power and numbers have been shown already with slight risk, Escobar who lit up the AFL with his offense and has always been known for his slick fielding at SS is only 21 years with sky high potential and CASH for Matt Garza? Garza has a Career ERA in the HIGH 3’s has one 15 games once and has a AVERAGE WHIP he will give you striekouts but thats it. Where in the white sox rotation would he fit? So please make an informed comment next time you you try saying this is over paying Carlos Quentin and a midlevel prospect would be well enough.

          • That deal wouldn’t be accepted by the White Sox, not even close.

          • dunt 5 years ago

            Ya that’s exactly what the White Sox need, another pitcher

            ::eye roll::

    • vtadave 5 years ago

      Ever heard of Jake McGee? If not, you will this year.

      • diesel2410 5 years ago

        Uhh yes…He might not start the season in the Bigs though

        • penpaper 5 years ago

          The team is going to give him every opportunity to be the closer next year. Why would you think he won’t be in the Bigs next year?

  4. harmony55 5 years ago

    I count 10 compensatory draft picks for the Tampa Bay Rays, assuming each Ray who declined arbitration signs with another team (although Grant Balfour may be hampered by his Type A status that requires a signing team to surrender a top draft pick).

    • Hopefully that will give the Rays a little leverage and we can atleast keep Balfour. The only way I see a team signing him is if they have a protected pick or have signed a higher A.

  5. kimofromkauai 5 years ago

    I would like to know what “deals” or “understandings” teams have made with some of these players. It seems that Felipe Lopez, Hawpe, Hoffman, Vazquez, and several other type B’s would have received much more money by accepting arbitration from their old teams. Granted some players may not have wanted to stay with their old teams but a lot of these transactions have a stink to them with several teams “working the system”.

    I think both the Commish and the Union should have some concerns here.

    • Agreed for the most part. But why’s Lopez bunched with the other 3? He made a little over $1 mil this season so I don’t know what you mean by “would have received much more money by accepting arbitration”.

      • kimofromkauai 5 years ago

        You’re right. I considered the Lopez situation as working the system because he was only with the Red Sox for a very short period – not because of the salary situation.

  6. Boy the Rays are screwed next year. Everybody declines and now they could have 10 draft picks. They better find some decent people from the bullpen

  7. mrmet128 5 years ago

    if the Rays don’t bring any of those free agents back and don’t sign any type A’s, they have 10 first round picks. nice.

    • moonraker45 5 years ago

      The question is… will they spend the necessary money on 10 high draft picks?

      • mrmet128 5 years ago

        well with those 10 high picks, and signing a good amount or all of them, they can make their already great farm system even better

      • mrmet128 5 years ago

        they should, because its a deep draft and 10 high picks is legit
        but yeah, im not sure they would spend the $$$ anyway

  8. Tko11 5 years ago

    The AL East will be very interesting next year…the only team that wont compete is the Orioles. If Jeter decides to not sign with the Yankees, that would shake it up even more.

    • Sniderlover 5 years ago

      I wouldn’t underestimate the Orioles either if I were you.

      • Tko11 5 years ago

        There is just no way they can compete with the rest of the AL East. Their rotation begins with Guthrie, you cant really compare him to Price, Lester, CC or Marcum. Same goes with the rest of the rotation, unless they all miraculously have breakout years.

        • moonraker45 5 years ago

          Brian Matusz finished the year 7-1 with a 2.18 ERA down the stretch…just saying.

        • the O’s pitching is going to be decent next year. this was a down year and majority of their pitchers finished strong. whether they carry it into next season is a question but still..

      • Tko11 5 years ago

        There is just no way they can compete with the rest of the AL East. Their rotation begins with Guthrie, you cant really compare him to Price, Lester, CC or Marcum. Same goes with the rest of the rotation, unless they all miraculously have breakout years.

  9. Lars Chunks 5 years ago

    I still don’t know why anyone would sign a 35 year old Scott Downs to a multi-year deal for around the $4M/yr he earned last year, AND give up a top pick on top of it.

    • Sniderlover 5 years ago

      I guess being consistently one of the best relievers in the game has nothing to do with it.

      4/5 decline arbitration from Jays, I’ll take it. Frasor will help our incredibly weak bullpen and we get 5 picks so a good day for the Jays.

      • moonraker45 5 years ago

        With the left over arms from the rotation, I don’t see the jays bullpen as being as weak as people think..

        Janssen, Purcey, Frasor, Litsch, Rzep, Ray, Roenicke… Add 1 veteran late innings guy who can throw hard and possibly close and the bullpen is atleast shaping up to be as good as last years if not better…. Losing Tallet alone is a huge step forward.. Purcey’s progression will help offset the loss of Downs IMO

        • i think they should give purcey a try at closing. he seems to have good stuff most of the times. that or sign qualls for 2MM and hope he bounces back like gregg

    • $5427573 5 years ago

      My guess is with respectable numbers from the AL East, he could tear it up in the NL in a reliever/closer role.

    • $5427573 5 years ago

      My guess is with respectable numbers from the AL East, he could tear it up in the NL in a reliever/closer role.

    • moonraker45 5 years ago

      because besides Soriano, he’s the best reliever available. period.

  10. baseballz 5 years ago

    Ahhh what a shocker, Frasor accepted. Guess those mystery clubs weren’t able to roll up those spare pennies fast enough to make a competitive offer.

    • $5427573 5 years ago

      Did anyone think he would actually sign anywhere else? Especially not with him getting the Type A free agent status.

      • lazerball 5 years ago

        I don’t know where the “especially” part is coming from here. The type A status should be the only thing preventing him from getting a multi-year deal. It’s a pretty big thing to be sure, but there wasn’t anything else preventing it from happening.

  11. So both Olivo and Lopez turn down arbitration. Hat tip to both AA and Theo for picking up high draft picks for virtually nothing.

  12. TwinsVet 5 years ago

    Does anyone know how far back arbitrators look at stats?

    I’m looking at Fransisco’s 25 saves back in 2009, and wondering if that will impact his salary figure. He earned a little over $3M last year as a setup man. Will he be awarded like a closer, like a setup man, or somewhere in between?

    Seems like the Rangers were hoping he’d decline, considering they could be paying $4-5M for an 8th inning guy…

  13. mnrunleft 5 years ago

    It will certainly be an interesting draft given all the extra picks teams will have. It will be interesting to see how teams with a lot early picks use them, going with guys who will sign at slot, below slot or risk on a more talented player who falls due to signability questions.

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