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MoTownTigers15

Adam Dunn is a free agent: Tigers "hopeful but you never know"

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I don't think anyone is saying that teams cannot offer arbitration and therefore will be deprived of compensation. I think the point being made is that the semantics are rather confusing. Why say that the old team "chooses to offer arbitration", when in reality arbitration between the player and old team cannot and will not occur? Instead, if the player signs with a new team before the old team has offered arbitration, why not skip any further detail about arbitration and just say that the old team receives compensation?

Because you are then setting up a situation where an act by one party to an agreement can compel another party to accept terms that are designed to be optional...the team has a right to choose to offer arb. You can't take that opton away from them unilaterally.

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So then the arbitration period should be exclusive from the free agency period. Making an offer that cannot be accepted doesn't make any sense. It's not an offer at that point.

While the team has the right to choose to offer arb, the player doesn't have the right to accept, since he's signed to a deal. The team should have made the decision to offer before a contract was signed.

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Well the easy solution is to just say "if a player signs before the team makes a decision on his arbitration offer, his old team gets the compensation by default." Which, in practice, is pretty much exactly how it works.

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Re: arbitration "offers" after a guy signs

It's not really an offer. The offer is a way to ensure compensation for losing a player you want to keep. The arb offer deadline is just a deadline to commit to wanting the player. When a player signs before that deadline you are given the option to be compensated. You aren't offering them arbitration but merely accepting compensation.

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