The Rangers are next in our arbitration eligibles series.
- First time: Andres Blanco, Elvis Andrus, Matt Harrison
- Second time: Nelson Cruz, David Murphy, Darren O'Day
- Third time: Colby Lewis, Mike Adams, Mark Lowe
- Fourth time: Mike Napoli
The Rangers face one of the more sizeable arbitration classes we've encountered so far in the American League. Blanco could be cut if the Rangers don't want to guarantee him a roster spot, though we're estimating only about $500K for his salary. Lewis' $3.25MM club option is a slam dunk, as we're estimating a $6MM salary if he goes to arbitration.
Napoli's fantastic offensive year should push his salary to the $8.5MM range. Cruz has again battled injuries, but he's in line for a healthy $6MM salary. Deadline acquisition Mike Adams is looking at about $4.3MM in his last year before free agency. Andrus, Harrison, and Murphy fall within the $2.6-3.2MM range, while relievers Lowe and O'Day project for $1.3-1.4MM.
All told the Rangers have a pretty expensive group, at an estimated $30MM not including Lewis and Blanco. They have about $101MM in commitments for next year once you add Lewis and Yoshinori Tateyama but before minimum salary players are included. That'd mark the Rangers' first foray past the $100MM mark since the Alex Rodriguez days, so you can see that simply squeezing in C.J. Wilson might require GM Jon Daniels to move some pieces around. On the other hand, attendance is up over 5,000 tickets per game this year and payroll figures to be on the rise.