Thanks to his Super-2 status, David Price is eligible for arbitration this winter, a year earlier than most players (for a full explanation of Super-2 status, see below). As we mentioned earlier today, this classification allowed Price to opt-out of the final year of the contract he signed after being drafted by the Rays in 2007.

Price would have made $1.5 million if had not chosen to opt-out of his deal. Obviously Price believes he will make more than $1.5 million in arbitration. How much more? A lot more.

According to MLB Trade Rumors, Price will make approximately $7.8 million in 2012. That is a nice little pay raise for one of the best young pitchers in baseball.

It is also very scary if you are a Rays fan. Assuming Price doesn’t sign an extension with the Rays, and assuming he continues to pitch well, his arbitration figures will rise at a steep clip in 2013, 2014, and 2015. Depending on how he pitches, Price could see arbitration salaries of $11 million in 2013, $14 million in 2014 and $17 million in 2015. And even if Price does sign an extension, the extra security is not going to discount those figures very much.

Anybody think the Rays are willing to pay that much for one player?

For comparison, James Shields would  most likely be a cheaper option down the road as he would make $9 million in 2013 and $12 million in 2014 if the Rays pick up the remaining options on his contract.

In other words, the Rays will pay Price in 2012. And they may even pay him in 2013. But it won’t be long before rumors start floating about the possibility of trading Price. And the chances that he is still pitching for the Rays in 2014 now seems like a pipe-dream.

* SUPER-2: In Major League Baseball a player becomes a free agent once they have reached six years of experience in the big leagues. Prior to that, a player is eligible to have their salary determined by an arbitrator if they have at least three years, but less than six years of experience. A player can qualify for arbitration a year early under what is called the “Super-2” classification. That is, players with at least two years, but less than three years of experience are ranked based on how much time they have been in the big leagues. The top 17 percent are eligible for arbitration.



  1. Sarah says:

    Well, and this is exactly why the Rays play that "keep 'em in Durham" service time game that the fans hate when it means waiting additional months to see a David Price or a Matt Moore . Bringing Price up early in 2009 means probably not having him in 2014. For clubs like the Rays, they either need to sign every decent prospect long term (like Longoria) or assume that they have to deal every good player before even free agency.

  2. Korfan says:

    Don't Go Don't leave
    Please stay with us
    You are the only player I love

  3. robert says:

    He certainly didn't pitch well down the stretch and he's not 20 game-winner good, not yet anyway. And maybe no one in the rotation will win 20 with the lack of hitting. With Moore in the rotation you could at this point and time get a lot for Price.

    • Pete says:

      Yes he is 20 game win good. You can't win games if your team only scores one run. Look at his whip. If you don't understand the stats don't try to use them. Sub pitchers like Sabathia are seen as better than they are because their team can score runs to win the game when he pitches. Look at how many games Price lost because his team scored 2 or less runs. Or the infield dropped the ball or over/under threw it. Granted he lost a few himself but c'mon the guy is great.

  4. John says:

    One thing about this is....there's ZERO chance that Friedman and the boys didn't know about this and most certainly have been planning on it. News to us but not to them.

    • Cork Gaines says:

      true. but Sternberg made it clear that they did not plan for a drop in attendance this season. they thought it would continue to climb and be even higher in 2012. Now they have to assume the worse.

      • Beth says:

        I can't believe that they didn't figure that dumping payroll and calling this a rebuilding year would have no box office impact. Or did they think that the Manny-Damon show would sell a lot of tickets?

  5. phil says:

    3 words for you: Alex Colombe/ Chris Archer/ Alex Torres potential replacements for Price after 2012 or 2013

    • td32 says:

      If by "replacement" you mean another pitcher, then yes. But you're smoking some good stuff if you expect those guys to sniff Price's performance any time soon, if ever.

  6. Mark says:

    I say don't let the door hit you in the ass Price. The man has all the talent in the world but is much to immature.


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