The Mariners are next in our arbitration eligibles series.
- First time: Shawn Kelley
- Second time: Jason Vargas
- Third time: David Aardsma, Luis Rodriguez
- Fourth time: Brandon League
Aardsma and Rodriguez are the primary non-tender candidates. Aardsma's salary in arbitration would remain close to $4.5MM and can't go below $3.6MM. Since he had Tommy John surgery in July, that wouldn't be good value. Rodriguez is a $700K type player, but he hasn't done anything noteworthy this year. Kelley also projects for $700K. Fully recovered from Tommy John, I think the Mariners will keep him around for 2012.
Vargas and League should each land in the $4.2-4.5MM range for 2012. They're both trade candidates, especially League having saved 34 games and counting.
If Kelley, Vargas, and League are retained, that should add around $9.4MM to the team's commitments, bringing the total to about $69MM before accounting for minimum salary players. That'd be about $26MM short of the 2011 payroll, so the team has flexibility.