We're about to fully enter offseason mode, with MLB free agency set to open soon and the trade market about to get flooded with action.
Before we get there, some business still needs to be attended to. This week is essentially paperwork week, as clubs around baseball are knocking off tasks like protecting players from the Rule 5 Draft and taking care of arbitration decisions.
The Rule 5 deadline has passed, but teams have until Friday night to either tender or non-tender players who are up for arbitration this winter. Just like with Rule 5 prospects, the Twins have some interesting decisions to make that could impact both what the team looks like next season and what moves will be made next month.
Twins Arbitration tracker: Who is eligible and who got tendered?
Now that the deadline has passed, here is every player the Twins tendered and and their projected salaries:
- Alex Kirilloff - $1.7M
- Kyle Farmer - $6.6M
- Ryan Jeffers - $3.2M
- Nick Gordon - $1M
- Willi Castro - $2.3M
- Caleb Thielbar - $3M
- Jorge Alcala - $1M
Minnesota will need to make a call one way or the other on whether to tender each of those players. The biggest decision surrounds Kyle Farmer, who is due around $6 million next season, a figure that got a lot heavier to carry after the Twins slashed the payroll by about $20 million.
There's a chance he comes back, but the most likely outcome is that he gets tendered and then traded as a way of bringing in additional pitching help.
How does arbitration work in MLB?
Arbitration is one of those fancy sounding things that happens in baseball that make you feel smart for talking about, and it's not as hard to understand as it seems.
Players with between three and six years of MLB service time are eligible to argue for a salary with their current team if they are tendered an offer. Players can accept the salary offered or go to a hearing where it will be determined by a panel
Imagine a restaurant where the team and player are sitting at a table. They each slide a napkin with a number on it, and if nothing can be agreed upon the waiter gets to decide what happens based on hearing the two sides out.
That's essentially how it works.
The most complicated part about all of this is how arbitration-eligible and pre-arbitration players are impacted differently. Arbitration-eligible players have the ability to call a hearing in order to determine their pay, where pre-arbitration players have to take what they're given.
What does tender and non-tender mean in MLB?
Teams have two pretty distinct options when it comes to how to approach a player who is arbitration eligible. If a player is tendered, that means the team has offered a contract that the player can either accept or go to an abitration hearing to get more money.
Non-tender is just another way to say the player is being released. Players who are non-tendered are not offered contracts before the deadline and become free agents once the offseason officially beings.
Tendered: Contract offered
Non-Tendered: No contract is offered and that player will enter free agency