The St. Louis Cardinals offered arbitration to outfielder Matt Holliday, infielder Mark DeRosa and pitcher Joel Pineiro. Arbitration was not offered to free agent third basemen Troy Glaus. Also, the Royals have not offered arbitration to catcher Miguel Olivo.
Alright, I’m going to be straight up honest with you. I follow baseball closely and pay attention to the offseason transactions, but I would have no way to try to explain to you how the arbitration process works. So, I did a little snooping around and found this website baseballsuite101.com. It looks like a pretty cool site, but the author, James Lincoln Ray explains arbitration in easy terms. So here is the breakdown below.
What Players Are Eligible for Arbitration?
A player and club who cannot agree on a contract may agree to salary arbitration, provided that the player has enough service time in the majors. The following players are eligible for arbitration:
(1) Players with at least 3 but less than 6 years of service in Major League Baseball;
(2) The top 17 percent of players with at least 2 but less than 3 years of Major League service. These are known as “Super 2” players. To qualify as a Super 2, a player must have accumulated at least 86 days of service in the previous year. Historically, the cutoff point for Super 2 status is 2 years, 128 days of service, though the requirement has been as high as 2 years, 140 days in years past.
(3) Players who have filed for free agency may also go through the arbitration process if their former team makes an offer of arbitration and the player accepts.
The Club’s Arbitration Offer Requirements
(1) A club must offer contracts to players under its control by no later than December 12;
(2) If a player has filed for free agency, his former club must offer him arbitration by December 1. If the player accepts by December 7, the player is placed back on the team’s roster, and the two sides may continue to negotiate or go to an arbitration hearing. If the free agent player declines the arbitration offer, the sides may continue to negotiate.
(3) The club’s salary offer to a player under its control may not be less than 80% of the player’s total compensation from the prior year, and may not be less than 70% of his compensation from 2 years earlier. These rules, however, do not apply to free agents who are offered arbitration.
The Arbitration Procedure and the Arbitration Hearing
Arbitration works as follows: In January, the player and the club each submit a salary figure to a three-person panel of professional arbitrators. hearings are conducted between the 1st and 20th day of February.
At the hearing, each party has one hour to present its case to the panel, and then has an additional 30 minutes for rebuttal. The player must attend the hearing, but is usually represented by his agent. A club executive or attorney usually represents the team.
The arbitration is a “high-low” proceeding, during which each side presents its case for why the player should be awarded the requested salary in the upcoming season. In deciding to award the higher or lower salary, the panel may consider the following criteria:
(1) the player’s contribution to the club in terms of performance and leadership;
(2) the club’s record and its attendance;
(3) any and all of the player’s “special accomplishments,” including All-Star game appearances, awards won, and postseason performance;
(4) the salaries of comparable players in the player’s service-time class and, for players with less than five years of service, the class one year ahead of him.
The parties may not refer to team finances, previous offers made during negotiations, comments from the press or salaries in other sports or occupations.
The panel, without opinion, awards the player a one-year, non-guaranteed contract at one salary or the other. If the player is cut within 16 days before the season begins, he is entitled only to 30 days’ termination pay. If the player is cut during spring training but after the 16th day before the season begins, he is entitled only to 45 days’ termination pay.
Again, thanks to baseballsuite101.com for that easy explanation. Once you figure it out, e-mail and explain it to me!