Roster Notes and Rules
- “C” stands for club controlled contract and a player not currently on the 25-man roster earning a Major League Baseball salary. The MLB minimum for 2016 was $507,500 as it was in 2015. If a player makes the 25-man roster, that is the lowest salary a club can dictate for a player, not including prorated bonuses. This saary is expected to rise considerably in the new CBA, perhaps near $800,000.
- Typically, club controlled contracts are slightly above the league minimum, depending on experience, but first-year players on club controlled contracts always start at the league minimum. Second-year players often get small bumps in pay, and third-year players get a decent increase from their second-year salary. Generally, pre-arbitration contracts remain within $150,000 or so of the minimum, with only rare exceptions.
- A club may not renew a contract at a salary less than 80 percent of the player’s salary and performance bonuses the previous year or less than 70 percent of his salary and performance bonuses from two years earlier.
- Arbitration remains the same; players who have at least three, but fewer than six seasons of service time qualify for arbitration, which greatly increases salaries on a year-to-year basis. The one exception for arbitration qualification is Super Two status. A player with less than three years of service time but more than two years, including at least 86 days of service the prior season, and is among the top 22 percent of such players in service time accrued, shall also be eligible for arbitration. That number for the 2016-17 offseason is two years, 131 days, which will read in new media as 2.131.
- Arbitration salaries, once assigned, do not become fully guaranteed until the regular season begins for his club. If the player is cut before the 16th day prior to the season beginning, he is entitled only to 30 days’ termination pay, which is just over 17 percent of the arbitration salary assigned. If the player is cut during Spring Training, but after the 16th day before the season begins, he is entitled to 45 days’ termination pay, which is just over 26 percent of his arbitration salary.
- The most service time that can be accrued in one season is 172 days.
- A player earns such service time even if placed on the 15-day or 60-day disabled list, or if he’s suspended. Players do not accrue MLB service time if on a minor league disabled list or if suspended while in the minor leagues.
- The below salary totals do not include incentives, buyouts or bonuses. Only salary that is 100 percent guaranteed is listed, with the exception of arbitration projections, noted with A next to the salary, and salaries that become guaranteed if roster spot is earned.
- Options is a term often misunderstood by fans and even some media members. Options represent option years, not total times sent from the 25-man roster, often called the “Active Roster,” to the minors. Once a player is placed on the 40-man roster, in order to assign that player to the minors the team uses one of three available options. During that season, the player can be called up and sent down as many times as the club wishes and it burns just the one option. Only one option can be burned during any one season. Spring training options count the same as options during the regular season.
- A player may be eligible for the rare fourth option year if he has been optioned in three seasons but does not yet have five full seasons of professional experience. A full season is defined as being on an active pro roster for at least 90 days in a season. If a player is placed on the disabled list after earning 60 or more days of service in a single season, his time on the disabled is counted. Because the requirement is 90 days, short-season assignments do not accrue enough time.
- If a player is optioned but spends less than 20 days in the minors before being recalled, an option is not burned. During the regular season, once a player is optioned to the minors, he cannot be recalled for at least 10 days unless it’s to replace a player placed on the 15-day or 60-day disabled list.
- Players with five years or more of service time cannot be assigned to the minors without his consent. If consent is not given, the player is afforded his release and becomes a free agent.
- Player on 15-day disabled list remain on a club’s 40-man roster; players placed on the 60-day disabled list are off the 40-man until activated.
- Casey Fien’s $1.1 million salary is only guaranteed if he makes the 25-man roster out of spring training.
|Seattle Mariners Payroll (12.3.16)