The arbitration deadline passed on Friday, as the Tampa Bay Rays were able to agree to terms with three of their four eligible players: Mike Zunino, Matt Duffy, and Chaz Roe. The Rays, however, were unable to come to terms with outfielder Tommy Pham. The two sides will now go to an arbitration case, on an unspecified date, in February.
We’ve agreed to terms for the 2019 season with three of our four arbitration-eligible players.
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) January 11, 2019
Zunino, who was acquired in the trade for Mallex Smith with Seattle, is entering his second year of arbitration eligibility. The catcher was projected to earn $4.2-million in 2019, according to MLB Trade Rumors.
Also in his second year of arbitration eligibility, Duffy was projected to earn $2.6-million. Roe — who is entering arbitration eligibility for the first time — was projected to earn $1.4-million.
Pham, who boasted a .343 BA/.448 OBP/.622 SLG/1.070 slash line across 39 games with the Rays (while performing to an overall 4.0 fWAR) after he was acquired from the St. Louis at last season’s non-waiver trade deadline, earned $570,100 in 2018 as a pre-arbitration eligible player. The outfielder turned down a two-year deal from the Cardinals and reportedly wasn’t happy with the figures he was being offered for the season, but eventually signed in order to play, writes Adam Sanford (DRaysBay).
Pham had not been shy about his treatment by the Cardinals’ front office during his time with St. Louis. He, most recently, made headlines for criticizing the Rays’ fanbase support — or lack thereof — in an interview with SiriusXM on December 27, saying the team has “really no fan base at all.”
So…anyone want to play “Guess the arbitration numbers” between Tommy Pham and the #Rays?
— Steve Carney (@stevecarney) January 11, 2019
It isn’t yet known how far apart the two sides are.
— Per Steve Adams (MLB Trade Rumors), the Rays are one of six teams still in on catcher J.T. Realmuto. It, however, appears the Dodgers may be (the) most motivated to land the backstop.
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