10:33pm: Jeff Passan of ESPN reports that the deadline for teams and players to come to agreements is set for 1:00 pm EST. Salary figures will be officially exchanged at 8:00 pm.
7:19pm: The deadline for teams to exchange salary figures with arbitration-eligible players is set for Thursday, according to Ronald Blum of the Associated Press. Rich Dubroff of Baltimore Baseball reports (on X) that the deadline is 8:00 pm EST.
Initially, that had been set for Friday afternoon. Andy Kostka of the Baltimore Banner notes (X link) that the league and Players Association agreed last month to move it up a day. It’s unclear why that decision was made. In any event, it’ll spur some activity a day earlier than anticipated.
The salary exchange date is not necessarily a deadline for teams to negotiate with their arbitration-eligible players. Teams and players are free to continue talks right up until a hearing (which generally run from mid-February into the beginning of March). It serves as an anchoring point in negotiations, though, and many teams treat it as an unofficial deadline to avoid a hearing. It’ll therefore spur a large number of salary agreements — Cal Quantrill, JT Brubaker and Hoby Milner all agreed to deals this afternoon — and could be the catalyst for a trade or two.
MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz projected salaries for all arbitration-eligible players at the start of the offseason. Juan Soto could top Shohei Ohtani’s record-setting $30MM mark in his final year of eligibility. Pete Alonso, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Gleyber Torres and trade candidates like Shane Bieber and Dylan Cease are all in line for notable sums in their own right.