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By the Numbers: 19 Deals with Salary Arbitration Players PDF Print E-mail
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Articles & Opinion
Written by Maury Brown   
Sunday, 03 February 2008 17:26

 

Money and Baseball

A Detailed Analysis of 19 Major League Baseball Player Contracts that Avoid Salary Arbitration 

On January 16th of this year, 110 players filed for salary arbitration. Two days later, that list was whittled down to 48 players that exchanged salary figures with their respective clubs. If a club and player do not reach a deal before their arbitration hearing is scheduled, a panel of three arbitrators will select either the player figure or the club figure. No value in-between is selected.

Those hearings will be completed no later than Feb. 21st, and at that time, I do my annual evaluation of all the deals and rulings within those 48 players that comprise this year’s salary arbitration class. I also will be providing some historical background on salary arbitration with comments from longtime baseball execs on how they view the process.

Until then, I thought that it would be interesting to look at the 19 deals that have been done, so far. As I will write in my extensive article in late February, players win, even if they lose, and owners always feel a pinch in their wallets. Salary arbitration may be Marvin Miller’s most crowning achievement.

In total, every player signed to date will receive raises for 2008 from last season ranging from a low of (if you want to call it, “low”) $75,000 (Endy Chavez) to $2,350,000 (Casey Blake). Remember, in the case of six players, they received multi-year deals (Molina, 4 yrs; Cuddyer, 3 yrs; Betancourt, 2 yrs; Chavez, 2 yrs; Soriano, 2 yrs; Rauch, 2 yrs), and therefore, salaries escalate in subsequent years (i.e. Betancourt will make $2.05 million for this season, but see $3.35 million in ’09).

As mentioned, even when players lose, they win. 15 of the 19 players reached deals that were below the mid-point between the figure the club offered and the figure the player asked when they exchanged figures (Biemel and Guerrier deals were at exactly the mid-point, while Geary, and Proctor were above).

In total, these 19 players increase their salaries from 2007 to 2008 by $15,196,577.

And, as also mentioned, even though the owners “win” they lose at every turn with salary arbitration. In total, clubs will pay $3,317,500 more than their offering figure, and that’s just these 19 players. We’ll see how that figure balloons when hearings are done after the 21st of February.

Only one player (Yadier Molina) sees him making a salary less than what his club (Cardinals) offered in salary arbitration for 2008. And, one player (Soriano) will make exactly what the club (Braves) offered. Both players are part of a multi-year deals that will see sizable increases in following years, however.

(Select Read More to see details of the 19 contracts met before arbitration this year)

The following is a break down of each player signed ahead of hearing, thus avoiding salary arbitration:

1) RP, Joe Beimel (Dodgers) –

  • Service Time: 5.053
  • 2007 Salary: $912,500
  • Club Figure: $1,700,000
  • Player Figure: $2,150,000
  • Mid-point: $1,925,000
  • Deal: 1 year, $1,925,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Push
  • Increase from Club figure: $225,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $1,012,500

2) SP, Matt Belisle (Reds) –

  • Service Time: 3.024
  • 2007 Salary: $390,000
  • Club Figure: $1,000,000
  • Player Figure: $1,650,000
  • Mid-point: $1,325,000
  • Deal: 1 year, $1,250,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owner ($75,000)
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $860,000

3) RP, Rafael Betancourt (Indians) –

  • Service Time: 4.079
  • 2007 Salary: $860,000
  • Club Figure: $1,750,000
  • Player Figure: $2,500,000
  • Mid-point: $2,125,000
  • Deal: 2 year, $5,400,000 (’08 salary: $2,050,000)
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owners ($75,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $300,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $1,190,000

4) 3B, Casey Blake (Indians) –

  • Service Time: 5.138
  • 2007 Salary: $3,750,000
  • Club Figure: $5,400,000
  • Player Figure: $6,900,000
  • Mid-point: $6,150,000
  • Deal: 1 year, $6,100,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owners ($50,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $700,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $2,350,000

5) RP, Dave Borkowski (Astros) –

  • Service Time: 3.138
  • 2007 Salary: $600,000
  • Club Figure: $750,000
  • Player Figure: $1,100,000
  • Mid-point: $925,000
  • Deal: 1 year, $6,100,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owners ($125,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $50,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $200,000

6) LF, Endy Chavez (Mets) –

  • Service Time: 5.065
  • 2007 Salary: $1,725,000
  • Club Figure: $1,725,000
  • Player Figure: $2,075,000
  • Mid-point: $1,900,000
  • Deal: 2 year, $3,850,000 (’08 salary: $1,800,000)
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owners ($100,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $75,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $75,000

7) RF, Michael Cuddyer (Twins) –

  • Service Time: 4.157
  • 2007 Salary: $3,575,000
  • Club Figure: $4,700,000
  • Player Figure: $6,200,000
  • Mid-point: $5,450,000
  • Deal: 3 year, $24,000,000 (’08 salary: $5,000,000)
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owners ($450,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $300,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $1,425,000

8) RP, Pedro Feliciano (Mets) –

  • Service Time: 3.059
  • 2007 Salary: $602,000
  • Club Figure: $880,000
  • Player Figure: $1,200,000
  • Mid-point: $5,450,000
  • Deal: 1 year, $1,025,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owners ($15,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $145,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $423,000

9) SP, Chad Gaudin (A’s) –

  • Service Time: 3.004
  • 2007 Salary: $400,000
  • Club Figure: $1,500,000
  • Player Figure: $2,050,000
  • Mid-point: $1,775,000
  • Deal: 1 year, $1,770,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owners ($5,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $270,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $1,370,000

10) RP, Geoff Geary (Astros) –

  • Service Time: 3.098
  • 2007 Salary: $837,500
  • Club Figure: $950,000
  • Player Figure: $1,250,000
  • Mid-point: $1,100,000
  • Deal: 1 year, $1,125,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Player ($25,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $175,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $287,500

11) 2B, Esteban German (Royals) –

  • Service Time: 3.008
  • 2007 Salary: $423,000
  • Club Figure: $837,500
  • Player Figure: $1,200,000
  • Mid-point: $1,018,750
  • Deal: 1 year, $1,000,000 (Preliminary agreement)
  • Advantage over mid-point: Player ($25,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $162,500
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $577,000

12) RP, Matthew Guerrier (Twins) –

  • Service Time: 3.056
  • 2007 Salary: $407,500
  • Club Figure: $750,000
  • Player Figure: $1,150,000
  • Mid-point: $950,000
  • Deal: 1 year, $950,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Push
  • Increase from Club figure: $200,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $542,500

13) C, Yadier Molina (Cardinals) –

  • Service Time: 3.123
  • 2007 Salary: $525,000
  • Club Figure: $1,850,000
  • Player Figure: $2,750,000
  • Mid-point: $2,300,000
  • Deal: 4 year, $15,500,000 (’08 salary: $1,750,000)
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owner ($550,000)
  • Decrease from Club figure: $100,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $1,225,000

14) RP, Scott Proctor (Dodgers) –

  • Service Time: 3.01
  • 2007 Salary: $445,923
  • Club Figure: $930,000
  • Player Figure: $1,300,000
  • Mid-point: $1,115,000
  • Deal: 1 year, $1,150,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Player ($35,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $220,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $704,077

15) RP, Jon Rauch (Nationals) –

  • Service Time: 3.126
  • 2007 Salary: $455,000
  • Club Figure: $1,100,000
  • Player Figure: $1,400,000
  • Mid-point: $1,250,000
  • Deal: 2 year, $3,200,000 (’08 salary: $1,200,000)
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owner ($50,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $100,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $745,000

16) RP, Kyle Snyder (Red Sox) –

  • Service Time: 4.026
  • 2007 Salary: $535,000
  • Club Figure: $725,000
  • Player Figure: $1,025,000
  • Mid-point: $875,000
  • Deal: 1 year, $835,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owner ($40,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $110,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $300,000

17) RP, Rafael Soriano (Braves) –

  • Service Time: 5.057
  • 2007 Salary: $1,300,000
  • Club Figure: $2,400,000
  • Player Figure: $3,400,000
  • Mid-point: $2,900,000
  • Deal: 2 years, $9,000,000 (’08 salary: $2,400,000)
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owner ($500,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $0
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $1,100,000

18) SP, Todd Wellemeyer (Cardinals) –

  • Service Time: 4.009
  • 2007 Salary: $635,000
  • Club Figure: $875,000
  • Player Figure: $1,325,000
  • Mid-point: $1,100,000
  • Deal: 1 year, $1,000,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owner ($100,000)
  • Increase from Club figure: $125,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $365,000

19) RP, Michael Wuertz (Cubs) –

  • Service Time: 3.007
  • 2007 Salary: $415,000
  • Club Figure: $750,000
  • Player Figure: $975,000
  • Mid-point: $862,500
  • Deal: 1 year, $860,000
  • Advantage over mid-point: Owner ($2,500)
  • Increase from Club figure: $110,000
  • Increase in salary from ’07: $445,000

 


Maury Brown

Maury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey. He is also an author for Baseball Prospectus, Basketball Prospectus and is an available as a freelance writer.

Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network.

 
 
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