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Phillies, Hunter Pence avoid arbitration for $10.4 million

Jan 27, 2012, 3:48 PM EDT

Hunter Pence

Hunter Pence and the Phillies won’t be needing an arbitration hearing, as Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com reports that the two sides have agreed to a one-year deal worth $10.4 million.

Pence submitted an $11.8 million request while Philadelphia countered at $9 million, which is a very big spread relative to other filings and may have kept the Phillies from adding another piece until they knew what his salary would be.

Pence, who was acquired from the Astros at midseason, earned $6.9 million last year while hitting .314 with 22 homers and an .871 OPS. He’ll be eligible for arbitration for the final time in 2013, at which point he’ll be a free agent at age 30.

  1. Utley's Hair - Jan 27, 2012 at 3:58 PM

    Good negotiation. Let’s eat…chocolate cake…or crispy bacon….

    Lets get something long term done here, folks.

  2. uyf1950 - Jan 27, 2012 at 3:59 PM

    Not a bad raise considering he made $6.9MM in 2011. It looks like another case of the 2 parties meeting in or very close to the middle of their salary submissions. Which I guess is a fair way to settle.

    • Jonny 5 - Jan 27, 2012 at 4:03 PM

      It sure beats a duel. Much less tears from family members.

      • Utley's Hair - Jan 27, 2012 at 4:06 PM

        If it was a duel, would Ruben need to bring his nunchucks? Or would he be able to use his Jedi mind tricks?

      • Alex K - Jan 27, 2012 at 4:07 PM

        Also much lower probability of a felony gun charge.

      • paperlions - Jan 27, 2012 at 4:50 PM

        Jedi mind tricks? How do those go, exactly?

        RAJ: “We will over you the most money and you will take it.”
        Player: “Sounds good.”

        RAJ: “You will sign this way over-market value contract.”
        Player: “Okay.”

      • uyf1950 - Jan 28, 2012 at 4:52 AM

        Jonny 5 my friend. Just for your info, As you already know I like to keep track of 3 teams payrolls (Yankees of course, Red Sox and Phillies). According to my tracking of the Phillies payroll for the 2012 season with that settlement of Pence’s arbitration case I have the Phillies sitting at a tick over $180MM for the MLB Luxury Tax Threshold AAV. That total just over $180MM (includes rounding out the 40 man roster at minimum $ amount and an amount for benefits, incentives, etc… which usually for all teams is about $10MM plus).

        Just thought you might like to know.

      • Jonny 5 - Jan 28, 2012 at 8:43 AM

        And that my friend is just so far. It could go higher. It’s not too much tax to pay as it sits though.

  3. mirmz - Jan 27, 2012 at 4:06 PM

    For these arbitration cases, does the player or team submit their price first?

    Or, is it a 1-2-3 “Draw! Holy cow, we’re still, after months of negotiations, $2.8M apart.”

    I feel like the party that submits their number first would lose some leverage since the second party could then undercut/over-ask in order to find a middle ground…

    • Francisco (FC) - Jan 27, 2012 at 4:10 PM

      Hmm… I would think both sides submit to the arbiter, and the arbiter reveals each side’s amount at the same time?

    • uyf1950 - Jan 27, 2012 at 4:14 PM

      Here’s a question. What would happen if the player submitted an amount lower than the team? And I wonder if it’s ever happened.

      • sknut - Jan 27, 2012 at 4:32 PM

        His agent should be fired would be the first thing that should happen. But its an interesting question.

      • rooney24 - Jan 27, 2012 at 4:33 PM

        I think that would be pretty unlikely, though technically possible. The two sides have been negotiating, so they should have an idea what the other side was thinking. I would think if there was a number in the middle that both could live with (or if the player’s last number were lower than the team’s), that they would have already signed a deal. If it ever were to happen, I think you might find a player that is quickly firing his agent.

      • jwbiii - Jan 27, 2012 at 5:01 PM

        Never happened. They would have settled before the process got that far. Here’s the scorecard:
        http://bizofbaseball.com/data/arbitrationresults.pdf

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