Arbitration Day for the Rays
The Rays were busy last night at the arbitration deadline. The Rays offered arbitration to Grant Balfour, Joaquin Benoit, Randy Choate, Carl Crawford, Brad Hawpe, Rafael Soriano, and Chad Qualls. They did not offer it to Carlos Pena and Dan Wheeler.
Players have until November 30 to accept the arbitration from the Rays. If a player signs with another team, the Rays get a draft pick, depending on the category of the player (Type A or Type B) from the signing club. Let’s take a second to look at each player and the reasoning for the arbitration offer or lack thereof.
Grant Balfour – The Rays offered him pretty much exactly what he made last season. Chances are very high that he will resign with the Rays as both sides are pretty much on the same page with the salary.
Joaquin Benoit – The Rays offered to him even though he signed already. This is simply a formality for the Rays to make sure they get the Tigers draft pick.
Randy Choate – He will most likely decline the offer and look to free agency because there are several teams that need a left handed pitcher. There is a chance he could return to the Rays, but his asking price is a bit high right now.
Carl Crawford – Don’t get your hopes up here, there is little to no chance CC returns to the Rays. This is just like Benoit, making sure we get a draft pick from him signing somewhere.
Brad Hawpe – Curious move here for the Rays. There is a deal in place, according to rumors, that he will go ahead and decline the offer and look to sign elsewhere.
Rafael Soriano – Sigh, just like Crawford and Benoit, just a formality for the Rays to make sure they get a draft pick.
Chad Qualls – Asking price very low for the veteran and chances are high that he returns to the Rays.
Carlos Pena – The Rays did not want to offer Pena arbitration because of the price it would have cost them (around $10 million). He is a free agent and the Rays can try to negotiate a new deal for him if they want to.
Dan Wheeler – Was due $4 million and the Rays simply did not feel he was worth that much money. They will try to bring him back at a much lower cost, but there may be several teams out there that could bring him in. Chances are he will be back for the Rays.