PHILADELPHIA -- The Phillies will likely offer binding salary arbitration to Type A free agents Jamie Moyer and Pat Burrell by Monday's midnight ET deadline, ensuring Draft pick compensation should either or both sign elsewhere.
By doing so, the team secures a first-round pick from their respective new team, provided that club finished with one of the 15 best records in 2008. If not, the Phillies would receive that team's second-round pick. In either case, Philadelphia will also receive a supplemental "sandwich" pick between the first and second rounds.
General manager Ruben Amaro Jr. has expressed a desire to retain both players -- and they club is actively negotiating with Moyer -- so offering arbitration is an obvious procedural move, since acceptance on the player's part makes him a "signed" player with at least a one-year deal with a salary to be determined by an arbitrator.
Moyer and Burrell are each seeking multiyear deals, making it unlikely they would accept by the Dec. 7 deadline. Declining wouldn't end the relationship with the Phillies, as the sides would still be able to agree on a deal.
Philadelphia will also be monitoring other free agents to see who isn't offered arbitration. Should they sign a Type A player who hasn't been offered arbitration by his team, the Phillies wouldn't lose a Draft pick as compensation.
Moyer is believed be close to a contract agreement, but the two sides have had difficulty coordinating schedules. Burrell is a dicier proposition, with the Phillies reportedly unwilling to go beyond a two-year proposal. Burrell is likely to find a better offer.
Ken Mandel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.