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Arbitration-eligible White Sox won't put dent in payroll

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Projected raises for five players amount to less than dead money on 2014 books

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Over the next few weeks, we'll be gathering info for offseason plans. MLB Trade Rumors helped us with one of the steps by releasing its list of projected 2016 salaries for arbitration-eligible players.

For the White Sox, these will need to be considered, as none of the five arb-eligible players -- Tyler Flowers, Avisail Garcia, Nate Jones, Zach Putnam and Dan Jennings -- are non-tender candidates.

MLBTR's projections can be significantly off on individual figures, but it usually does a pretty good job of taking a stab at the sum. Last year, Jeff Samardzija, Javy Guerra, Hector Noesi, Dayan Viciedo, Jones and Flowers earned $20.4225 million in arbitration salaries, just a smidge above the projected total of $19.8 million. Likewise, the actual arbitration salaries in 2014 ($12.175 million) slightly exceeded MLBTR's figure ($11.7 million).

Whatever the 2016 total comes out to, it won't be as daunting as previous years since they don't have any significant free agents-to-be. Here's how MLBTR assesses the White Sox' arbitration raises:

2015 2016
Tyler Flowers $2.675 $3.5M
Avisail Garcia $523K $2.3M
Nate Jones $660K $900K
Zach Putnam $525K $800K
Dan Jennings $523K $700K
Total $4.91M $8.2M

Arbitration salaries reward fairly archaic symbols of player worth, but even with that in mind, the estimate for Garcia's first arbitration year seems high since even his traditional stats aren't impressive. On the flip side, it looks a little low for Jennings and Flowers (whose salary was underprojected last season). Jones and Putnam look about right, although both of their careers are weird enough to make finding comparables difficult.

Either way, if MLBTR's projection is low, the Sox will still make accounting easy this time around. MLBTR predicts the Sox will have to hand out $3.29 million in arbitration raises, which is still less than the money they save now that Jeff Keppinger's $4.5 million salary is no longer on the payroll.

I think we should've made a bigger deal about the obligation to Keppinger lapsing, so here it is.

Star-divide

In other roster news, Chris Cotillo has a batch of players who were outrighted during the 2015 season opting for free agency, including a couple of names we know: