Players on 40-man rosters with at least two years and 139 days of Major League service and less than six full years are considered arbitration eligible, assuming they are not already signed to a contract covering 2013. Arbitration eligible players almost always receive raises, and sometimes a player's expected salary exceeds his expected value. Such players are non-tendered, meaning they are not offered contracts by their teams and become free agents. The deadline for these decisions comes earlier than usual this year, on November 30th.
A handful of Major League contract-worthy players typically hit the free agent market by way of a non-tender every year. David Ortiz and Jayson Werth were non-tendered in their careers, and in more recent years players such as Edwin Encarnacion, Bobby Jenks, Russell Martin, Joel Peralta, Chien-Ming Wang, Jeff Keppinger, Joe Saunders, Jonny Gomes, Matt Capps, John Buck, and Chris Capuano were cut loose in this way.
This year, of the 191 players currently eligible for arbitration, approximately 50 are non-tender candidates. Click here to check out my subjective non-tender candidate list from a month ago (many of the listed players have since been cut loose). Decent names who may become free agents next week include Mark Reynolds, Geovany Soto, Ian Stewart, Daric Barton, Ryan Sweeney, Jair Jurrjens, John Lannan, Mike Pelfrey, and Brian Wilson.
As usual, we'll be all over the November 30th non-tender deadline. Our non-tender tracker, which allows filtering by tender status and team, is the best tool for following along. The newly-minted free agents will be added to our 2013 MLB free agent tracker and list as well.