SIOUX FALLS, S.D. -- While some teams have adopted a file-and-trial policy regarding their arbitration-eligible players, the Twins remain open to coming to agreements with both left-hander Brian Duensing and outfielder Jordan Schafer before arbitration hearings in February.
The Twins signed Trevor Plouffe, Tommy Milone, Casey Fien and Eduardo Nunez to one-year deals before Friday's deadline, but failed to come to agreements with Duensing and Schafer. Duensing filed for $3.1 million in arbitration and the Twins countered with $2.4 million, while Schafer filed for $1.7 million and the Twins offered $1.2 million.
So while some teams such as the Blue Jays, Braves, Brewers, Dodgers, Indians, Marlins, Pirates, Rays and White Sox employ a file-and-trial policy that treated Friday as a firm deadline before ultimately going to a hearing, the Twins don't employ such a policy. Minnesota also prefers to avoid going to hearings, as it hasn't gone to one since 2006 with Kyle Lohse.
Duensing, who made $2 million last season while posting the second-lowest ERA of his career (3.31 ERA in 54 1/3 innings), said he's hopeful the two sides will be able to work something out before a hearing.
"Hopefully, we get it figured out before then," said Duensing, while representing the Twins on their annual Winter Caravan. "But that's why the system is set up the way it is, for situations like this. But hopefully we can get something figured out."
In the unlikely case the Twins can't work out a deal with either Duensing or Schafer, and have to go to an arbitration hearing, a three-person panel decides to either choose the team's proposed salary or the player's proposed salary for the upcoming season, with the decision binding. It's more likely the Twins find a middle ground with both players before going to a hearing.
Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.