Balfour wants multiyear deal – declines arbitration

Grant Balfour has stated that he’s confident his Type A status won’t prevent him from signing a multi-year deal.   Grant last night declined the Rays offer of arbitration which traditionally involves accepting a one year no guarantee contract and Grant clearly thinks he did well enough last year to receive a multi year deal.    Being what is known as a Type A free agent [please explain] means that any club other than the Rays signing him must forfeit a draft pick which can have the effect of dampening any multi year offers.    This is how the St Petersburg Times reported the current situation:-

Balfour said he feels he has pitched well enough to get a multi-year deal and the decision to decline arbitration – and the 1-year, non-guaranteed deal that comes with it – was “not really that tough, to be honest with you.” Balfour said he’d be open to returning to the Rays under a multi-year deal, but “I would have liked to have heard something” before now. He said he expects interest from several teams despite his Type A designation (which means the signing team has to give up a draft pick). “I’ll take my chances on what I’ve done the past few years,” he said. “I believe there’s a multi-year deal out there for me.”

Grant who is currently in Sydney visiting his family and is expected to make an appearance at Blacktown this weekend may have to wait a while to finalise a contract.   This is what MLBTrade Rumours had to say:

MLB attempted to speed the offseason up, but the recent rush of offers may work against the league’s goal. Teams will likely be reluctant to hand over a top pick for Grant BalfourFrank Francisco or Jason Frasor, but once clubs sign free agents with higher Elias rankings, those relievers will cost a second rounder at most. Those three Type A right-handers will draw interest, but it may take a while for them to sign.

A Tampa Bay blog Rayhawk Review expresses disappointment that Grant is leaving the Rays.

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