Tomorrow is the deadline for teams to offer arbitration to their free agents. If they do not tender an offer of arbitration, the team is unable to sign the player until May 1st. In essence, if you do not offer arbitration to one of your free agents, you are choosing to let him go. Free agents not offered arbitration no longer qualify for compensation, so the signings will pick up after tomorrow and teams no longer fear giving up draft choices for marginal players overvalued by Elias’ ridiculous ratings.
I’m expecting the club to offer arbitration to both Dan Wilson and Ron Villone, though it is possible that they will work out an agreement with Wilson that he will not accept the offer of arbitration. This will give the team and player until December 19th to work out a deal. The M’s want Wilson back and he wants to come back, so I’d expect an agreement will be reached, probably not before tomorrow however.