I’m almost certain that baseball players and their agents look forward to going into the courtroom for arbitration about as much as they look forward to a root canal.
Luckily, thanks to all the transactions earlier today, the Blue Jays have avoided arbitration hearings for the past 13 seasons. Had they not, this is the painstaking process that the player would need to go through – courtesy of “How Baseball Arbitration Works“:
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.
Part of me wishes that the arbitration hearings were televised, but the other part of me realizes that it would probably be the most god awful thing to sit through. Unfortunately, the glamour and the drama of Law and Order or Boston Legal are nowhere to be seen, but at least they talk baseball … which would make it somewhat watchable.
Here’s a quick breakdown of which players on the Blue Jays roster received a pay raise, and how much it compares to their previous year’s salary:
|The Player||2009 Salary||2010 Salary||% Increase|
|Jeremy Accardo||$900,000||$1,080,000||20 %|
|Shawn Camp||$750,000||$1,150,000||53.3 %|
|Jason Frasor||$1,450,000||$2,650,000||82.8 %|
|Casey Janssen||$413,900||$700,000||69.1 %|
|Shaun Marcum||$405,200||$850,000||109.7 %|
|Brian Tallet||$1,015,000||$2,000,000||97 %|
|The Player||2008 IP||2009 IP||% Increase|
|Jeremy Accardo||12.1||24.2||50 %|
|Shawn Camp||39.1||79.2||102.5 %|
|Jason Frasor||47.1||57.2||21.4 %|
|Brian Tallet||56.1||160.2||185.6 %|
While $1.15 million might seem like a lot for a guy like Shawn Camp, he is undoubtedly going to be pitching 60+ innings again this season with the young starting rotation. He usually eats up 2-3 innings at a time, so for an opportunity to give the other arms in the bullpen some rest, I would say it’s a smart investment.
Brian Tallet and Jason Frasor’s increases in salary are warranted – both played a vital role to the team in 2009, and probably also would have prior to that if not for John Gibbons’ aversion to using Frasor and Tallet.
Jeremy Accardo and his agent avoided bloodshed in arbitration as the Blue Jays threw just over $1 million to keep him on the team. This should Cito all the more reason to hand the ball to Accardo, but I think it’s very unlikely. Maybe we’ll see Mutiny: Part Two early this summer!
On the surface, the pay bumps for both Casey Janssen and Shaun Marcum might seem unwarranted since both of them barely even pitched in 2009. Keep in mind that Janssen was a workhorse in 2007 as the setup man appearing in 70 games, and prior to his Tommy John surgery, Marcum started a combined 50 games in 2007-2008 and pitched 310 innings.