The Florida Marlins traded outfielder Jeremy Hermida to the Boston Red Sox, and expect more moves like this, as teams, most likely in record numbers this winter, either deal players facing arbitration this year or simply decline on those players, making them free agents.
After three years of major league service, players are eligible for three years of arbitration-determined pay, which means that if the player and the team can’t reach an agreement on a contract, both sides submit a one-year contract figure to an arbitrator and then present their case to an arbitrator as to which figure should be awarded the player.
It can sometimes be a costly process for a team, so a number of them, in budget-cutting moves, are expected to eithet try to trade those players or just say they are not going to file for arbitration on a player, which makes them a free agent without any compensation to the team.
It means there could be some young talented players available on the free agent market that may not cost large sums of free agent money.
On “The Sports Fix,” on Thursday, co-hosted by me and Kevin Sheehan on ESPN 980 and espn980.com, Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo said his team would take a good look at some of those players are they become available. Washington’s wish list includes a middle infielder, a starter and at least one reliever, though I think they need to add a right fielder to that and give up on the Elijah Dukes experiment as a final goodbye to the Jim Bowden era.
But Rizzo also pointed out that the Nationals have a large number of players racing arbitration this year — 11 — and will be facing their own decisions with some of their players.
Listen to “The Sports Fix,” co-hosted by me and Kevin Sheehan, from noon to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday on ESPN 980 and espn980.com.
For more information about Thom Loverro, go to www.thomloverro.com