More than half of ranked free agents received offers of arbitration from their teams earlier in the week. Clubs offered 37 ranked free agents arbitration (up from 35 last year and 23 the year before) and that total may increase when the Tigers announce their decisions on Wilson Betemit and Magglio Ordonez. Here's what we learned from the flurry of arbitration offers:
- 37 of 55 ranked free agents (67%) obtained offers of arbitration so far. Keep in mind that the total doesn't include the two Tigers, but does include players who signed before the deadline and the six modified Type A free agents.
- By way of comparison, teams offered 35 of 65 total ranked free agents arbitration (54%) a year ago.
- This year teams offered 13 of 16 Type A free agents arbitration (81%). 24 of 39 Type B free agents (62%) obtained arbitration offers so far.
- If you haven't done so already, click here for an explanation of how free agent compensation works and click here for our arbitration offer tracker.
General Observations About The Decisions
- Teams continue to value draft picks highly, despite the news that they’ll face spending limits in upcoming drafts.
- The former teams of the six Type A free agents who will no longer cost draft picks to sign all offered the players arbitration. Would Heath Bell, Michael Cuddyer, Kelly Johnson, Ryan Madson, Josh Willingham and Francisco Rodriguez all have obtained offers were it not for the rule change? Maybe, but their status change sure didn’t hurt.
- Every Type A free agent obtained an offer except Roy Oswalt and two players whose teams were contractually prohibited from offering arbitration (Carlos Beltran and Takashi Saito).
- Here's a more detailed look at what the decisions mean for a handful of free agents.
What To Expect In 2012
- Next year’s process will be all about the game’s top free agents and it will occur earlier in the offseason. Fewer free agents figure to obtain offers from their teams, which will hesitate to offer deals to non-elite players.
- After a five day quiet period following the World Series, teams must offer free agents substantial contracts to be eligible for compensation picks (to be precise, the guaranteed one-year contract offers must match the average salary of the 125 highest-paid players from the prior season).
- For what will may be the last time, the supplementary first round will again be extremely long in 2012.