Rowand, Gagne, Pettitte offered arbitration at deadline
NEW YORK -- On a deadline day that has lost much of its importance, major league teams offered salary arbitration Saturday to 17 of their former players who became free agents, a group that included outfielder Aaron Rowand and pitcher Livan Hernandez.
Before last year, the deadline day was Dec. 7 and players not offered arbitration couldn't re-sign with their former teams until May 1. But under baseball's new labor contract, agreed to during last year's World Series, free agents can return to their former teams at any time.
Philadelphia made the offer to Rowand and Arizona to Hernandez. Oakland offered arbitration to designated hitter Mike Piazza and outfielder Shannon Stewart, Kansas City to pitcher David Riske and San Francisco to infielder Pedro Feliz.
The Yankees offered arbitration to pitchers Andy Pettitte and Luis Vizcaino. They also offered it to third baseman Alex Rodriguez and closer Mariano Rivera, who have agreed to contracts but have not finalized their deals. New York didn't offer arbitration to Roger Clemens, who may retire.
Boston made arbitration offers to relievers Eric Gagne and Mike Timlin. San Diego made offers to outfielder Mike Cameron and catcher Michael Barrett but declined to offer arbitration to outfielder Milton Bradley. Houston offered arbitration to infielder Mark Loretta and left-hander Trever Miller.
By not offering arbitration, a club loses the right to receive amateur draft picks if it loses a highly ranked player to another team. Free agents offered arbitration have until Dec. 7 to accept.
Designated hitter Sammy Sosa was declined salary arbitration by the Texas Rangers before the deadline, along with Jamey Wright, Jerry Hairston Jr. and Brad Wilkerson. But that doesn't preclude the Rangers from re-signing Sosa or any of the others at any time.
Daniels said there have been some conversations with Sosa's agent, Adam Katz, about the slugger returning next season. But Katz is also still trying to get a feel for what Sosa's free agency value is.
"We haven't exchanged anything," Daniels said. "We agreed to stay in touch."
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press
MORE MLB HEADLINES
- Source: D-backs, Pennington avoid arbitration
- Police question Cubs' Castro about shooting
- Source: Kuroda leaving MLB, returning to Japan
- Uggla, Bell agree to deals with Nationals