Salary arbitration in Major League Baseball officially ends today with one lone player left to have his salary for the upcoming season resolved. A hearing between the Houston Astros and outfielder Hunter Pence is scheduled for later today. A panel of three arbitrators will hear the case with Pence and his team arguing he is worth $6.9 million while the Astros will counter with $5.15 million. The panel then will make its announcement as to which salary figure Pence will make for the upcoming season. There is no selection in-between the two figures.
Pence is going through the salary arbitration process for the second year in a row. Last year as a Super Two player, he reached $3.5 million deal avoiding arbitration after he sought $4.1 million while the Astros had offered $3.1 million. This is the second hearing in as many years for the Astros after winning their case last year with SP Wandy Rodriguez.
Pence hit .282 with an OBP of .325 and a .461 slugging percentage last season. His 91 RBIs, 93 runs scored and 18 stolen bases were all career highs. Â He also tied his career best 25 home runs for the third season in a row.
All told, 137 player were deemed to be potential salary arbitration eligible players (see the tracker), with 119 filing for the process (see the players that filed). A total of 33 players exchanged salary figures (see player asking and club offering figures).
The 2011 salary arbitration season will end with just three hearings taking place. RHP Ross Ohlendorf won his case with the Pirates, while the Angels beat RHP Jered Weaver. Pence is the only position player to go to hearing this year.
From 1974, when the process was put in place to now, clubs have won 286 hearings compared to the players taking 211.
THE BIZ OF BASEBALL WILL HAVE AN EXTENSIVE REPORT ON SALARY ARBITRATION FORTHCOMING
OTHER SALARY ARBITRATION RESOURCES:
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