Arbitration Deadline Roundup
Karim Garcia Won't Be Back In 2004
Karim Garcia Won't Be Back In 2004

Posted Dec 21, 2003


The deadline to offer contracts to arbitration-eligible players passed Saturday night at midnight, and some interesting choices were made. The Yankees didn't offer contracts to OF Karim Garcia and David Dellucci, ending their tenures with the Yankees, but they did offer contracts to some of their other players.

New York offered contracts to arbitration-eligible RHP Javier Vazquez and 2B Alfonso Soriano, LHP David Wells declined arbitration but is expected to sign a minor-league deal, and LHP Gabe White accepted the Yankees' offer of arbitration.

Garcia came over to the Yankees in a mid-June trade from the Cleveland Indians.  After the trade, Garcia .305 with six homeruns and 21 RBI in 52 games for the Yankees and he hit .267 in 30 postseason at bats.  During one of those postseason games, game three of the ALCS, Garcia - and reliever Jeff Nelson - was involved in a fight in the Yankees' bullpen with a Boston groundskeeper.  He is currently being charged with assault.

Dellucci was acquired by the Yankees in the trade for Raul Mondesi and served most of his time as a pinch runner and defensive replacement.  He hit just .173 with one homerun and three stolen bases in 51 at bats.  At the end of the season, he had expressed interest in returning to the Yankees for 2004, but the acquisitions of Gary Sheffield and Miguel Cairo made Dellucci expendable.

Vazquez and Soriano were both eligible for arbitration because they have more than three years of Major-League service but less than six.  The Yankees are trying to lock Vazquez up for four years at around $9 million per year, and their offer to Soriano will likely be for one year at around $4-6 million.  Vazquez was acquired in a trade earlier this month from the Expos for 1B Nick Johnson, OF Juan Rivera and LHP Randy Choate.

Left-handers Wells and White were both offered arbitration by the December 8 deadline.  Wells, who underwent back surgery last month, will sign a minor league deal worth roughly $3 million that has incentives that could increase his salary to $7 million.  He accepted arbitration only to increase the negotiating window.  White accepted the Yankees' offer and, if it goes to arbitration, will probably make around $2 million.

The cuts and signings brings the Yankees payroll commitments to exactly 25 players, but that includes Drew Henson's $2.2 million salary.  Currently, the payroll is estimated to be about $155 million.

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