Arbitration date set for Ross

Arbitration date set for Ross

MIAMI -- A date has been set for Cody Ross' arbitration hearing. The 29-year-old outfielder will have his case heard on Feb. 15 in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Arbitration-eligible for the second time, Ross was unable to come to terms with the Marlins by the Jan. 19 deadline. The Marlins have a policy that if an agreement isn't reached by the deadline, the matter is settled at a hearing.

Ross is seeking $4.45 million, whereas the Marlins counteroffer is $4.2 million. The arbitrators must pick one of the two figures.

In 2009, Ross made $2.225 million.

Technically, both sides can keep negotiating until the hearing begins, but that is not the Marlins' policy, and a third party is expected to make the decision.

Ross projects to be the Marlins' Opening Day right fielder. He was acquired by Florida in 2006, and is coming off a career year for home runs (24) and RBIs (90).

Spring Training begins on Feb. 20, which is the first day pitchers and catchers begin workouts at the Roger Dean Stadium complex in Jupiter, Fla. Position players take their physicals on Feb. 24, and the first full-squad workout is scheduled for that afternoon.

Joe Frisaro is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.