The Rays and JP Howell have agreed to a 1-year, $1.35 million contract, avoiding arbitration (per Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times). Howell was projected to make $1.4 million through arbitration, so the Rays may have saved a couple of dollars by avoiding the arbitration process.
The Rays still have four players that are eligible for arbitration, including David Price, BJ Upton, Jeff Niemann, and recently acquired reliever Burke Badenhop. If those players do not agree to a contract extension by tomorrow, the Rays will have their 2012 salaries determined by an arbitrator.
If tomorrow’s deadline passes, there is still the possibility that the players could avoid arbitration by signing a multi-year deal. However, the Rays will not grant anymore 1-year deals to the arb-eligible players, per team policy.