When is the MLB Arbitration deadline? Padres players who are eligible & more

The Friars' list of arbitration-eligible players took a hit earlier this offseason.
San Diego Padres relief pitcher Adrian Morejon (50) throws a pitch
San Diego Padres relief pitcher Adrian Morejon (50) throws a pitch / Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

The MLB arbitration deadline is quickly approaching. And while the San Diego Padres don't have near the salary obligations they would've have had a certain outfielder not been traded earlier this offseason, a handful of Padres players will still be owed a bump in pay heading into the 2024 season.

Yes, it's that time of year when owners, executives, players, and agents all get together to discuss salaries for the upcoming season. In case you're unaware, major league players who have more than three years of service time, but less than six, are eligible for salary arbitration.

What does that mean? Clubs and players will exchange salary figures between now and the deadline with hopes of coming to an agreement on a player's wages for the upcoming season. If the two sides are unable to come to an accord, an arbiter will be called upon to settle the dispute. Sometimes, these situations can get messy, but more times than not, arbitration can be avoided.

When is the MLB Arbitration deadline?

This year, teams and players have until Thursday, January 11th at 8:00 PM to hammer out the contract details they plan to exchange for the upcoming season, a last-second switch from the expected date of Jan. 12. The San Diego Padres will be working with players and agents over the next couple of days in hopes of avoiding arbitration altogether.

If the Padres are unable to reach an agreement with all their arbitration-eligible players, the arbitration hearings will likely take place in late-January or early-February.

Which Padres players are eligible for arbitration?

The elephant in the room is now in the Bronx. By trading Juan Soto to the New York Yankees earlier this offseason, the San Diego Padres rid themselves of their most expensive arbitration-eligible player. Soto will likely command upwards of $20 million this season.

However, the Friars still have a handful of arbitration-eligible players still on the roster. Pitchers Enyel De Los Santos, Adrian Morejon, and Michael King, along with catcher Kyle Higashioka are all eligible for arbitration this winter.

What are the projected salaries for the Padres arbitration-eligible players?

MLB Trade Rumors projects that the San Diego Padres will spend about $5 million on those four players who are up for arbitration this offseason.

  • Michael King: $2.6 million
  • Kyle Higashioka: $2.3 million
  • Enyel De Los Santos: $1.2 million
  • Adrian Morejon: $900K

Unless players receive Super Two status, a team's arbitration window is only three years. This will be Kyle Higashioka's final trip through the arbitration process, while both Michael King and Adrian Morejon are entering Year 2. This is the first year that Enyel De Los Santos is up for arbitration.

The San Diego Padres should be able to come to terms with all four of their arbitration-eligible players before Friday's deadline, but stranger things have happened.