Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here... highlighting the big storyline. Because there's nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
The Red Sox reached agreements with all but one of their arbitration eligible players today.
On the heels of agreements with catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia ($4.5 million on Thursday) and Jacoby Ellsbury ($9 million earlier today), the Sox also avoided arbitration with the following:
- Right-hander Alfredo Aceves ($2.65 million)
- Right-hander Andrew Bailey ($4.1 million)
- Right-hander Daniel Bard ($1.8625 million)
- Right-hander Joel Hanrahan ($7.04 million)
- Left-hander Andrew Miller ($1.475 million)
- Left-hander Franklin Morales ($1.4875 million)
That leaves only left-hander Craig Breslow, who filed at $2.375 million, while the Sox countered at $2.325 million. That's only a difference of $50,000, which means the Sox are all but guaranteed of maintaining their streak of avoiding arbitration hearings. Their last hearing came in 2002, when they beat Rolando Arrojo.
I was never one to get myself worked up over arbitration. I know that some people are highly interested it in, but not me. It lets baseball grab a headline or two in the middle of winter, but that's about it. The whole 'drama' around it is absurd.
Will the Red Sox have to pay Craig Breslow the extra $50,000 he's asking? Can they sort it out before someone else makes the decision for them? Stay tuned!
And the Sox streak of avoiding arbitration is just as silly. I could rattle off five made-up reasons why it matters, but that would all be nonsense. The Sox and their players are able to come to mutually-agreeable terms on their own, without someone forcing them to. That's all it means. No reason to hold a parade.
Arbitration is one of those things that makes baseball 'unique' in the American sports landscape. It's also stupid. But with the way baseball is set-up, there's probably not a better way. At least not for players whose talent and production elevate quickly. Slightly imperfect, but very fair.
Next year, around the same time, we'll do this same dance. We'll applaud the Red Sox for avoiding hearings. We'll be taken aback that player X got a million dollar raise. And then we'll go back to our regular lives, because those guys who are arbitration-eligible were always going to be playing for the Sox the following year anyway. Regardless of any of this.
Rest of the links:
Herald - Jacoby Ellsbury takes the $9M | ESPN - Red Sox avoid arbitration drama | WEEI - Shane Victorino discusses Manti Te’o situation, playing in World Baseball Classic | CSNNE - Full rotation makes Sox a 'tough sell' to veterans | Sox nearly done with arbitration to-do list | Globe - Red Sox sign Jacoby Ellsbury, six others to one-year deals