Texas Rangers v Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

Teams offer arbitration to just 14 of 29 “Type A” free agents

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When offered arbitration Type B free agents allow their old team to pick up a draft pick between the first and second rounds, but because their new team doesn’t have to give up anything to sign them their market value isn’t impacted by whether or not the arbitration is offered.

However, with Type A free agents who’re offered arbitration their old team is in line to receive a draft pick between the first and second rounds plus their new team’s first-round pick.

In other words, Type A free agents who are offered arbitration cost a first-round draft pick to sign while Type A free agents not offered arbitration require no compensation, in many cases making their market value heavily dependent on the arbitration status.

All of which is why it’s interesting that just 14 out of the 29 free agents classified as Type A were offered arbitration yesterday, making the other 15 free to sign without compensation changing hands. Here are the complete lists …

Type A free agents offered arbitration:

Grant Balfour
Adrian Beltre
Carl Crawford
Jorge De La Rosa
Scott Downs
Adam Dunn
Frank Francisco
Jason Frasor
Paul Konerko
Cliff Lee
Victor Martinez
Carl Pavano
Rafael Soriano
Jayson Werth

Type A free agents not offered arbitration:

Vladimir Guerrero
Matt Guerrier
Derek Jeter
Derrek Lee
Bengie Molina
Magglio Ordonez
Andy Pettitte
A.J. Pierzynski
Manny Ramirez
Arthur Rhodes
Mariano Rivera
Takashi Saito
Miguel Tejada
Billy Wagner
Dan Wheeler

Report: Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on Sonny Gray

OAKLAND, CA - AUGUST 06: Sonny Gray #54 of the Oakland Athletics pitches against the Chicago Cubs during the first inning at the Oakland Coliseum on August 6, 2016 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images)
Jason O. Watson/Getty Images
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The Astros remain in contact with the Athletics on starting pitcher Sonny Gray, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports. The Astros have added Charlie Morton this offseason, but the club has been trying to add a big-name starting pitcher to put at the top of the rotation behind Dallas Keuchel.

Gray, 27, was limited to 22 starts in the 2016 season due to a forearm issue. His stats left a lot to be desired, as he finished with a 5-11 record, a 5.69 ERA, and a 94/42 K/BB ratio over 117 innings. Considering how Gray pitched in the previous three years, he’s a good bet to bounce back.

Gray is under team control through 2019, which is a big draw for the Astros. Needless to say, the Athletics would want a haul in terms of prospects. Gray will earn $3.575 million in 2017, having avoided arbitration in his first year of eligibility.

President Obama Welcomes the Cubs to the White House

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As we noted last week, The Chicago Cubs took the unusual step of not waiting until the summer after winning the World Series to make their customary White House visit to meet the president. They did it today, seeing President Obama a few short days before he leaves office.

Despite the fact that Obama is a White Sox fan, he met the Cubs with diplomacy and grace. It’s almost as if he’s been in that business for the past eight years. In return, he was given some gifts by the Cubs: Theo Epstein presented Obama with a No. 44 Cubs jersey, a tile from the center field scoreboard at Wrigley Field, and a lifetime pass to Wrigley as well.

Obama is staying in D.C. after he leaves office this week, hanging around so his daughter can finish high school in the same place she started. Even so, he’s likely going to be back to Chicago a good bit over the rest of his life, so he’ll likely be able to put the free pass to work. Assuming it comes with, like, six companion passes for his Secret Service detail.