The major league service time required for arbitration this offseason was 2 years, 122 days, according to calculations by the commissioner's office and the players' association.
Los Angeles Angels infielder Chris Nelson was the last player to make it among the 28 with enough service time. Seattle pitcher Charlie Furbush was the player closest to qualifying who missed, falling one day short. On Boston's active major league roster all season, Doubront has 2 years, 120 days of service.
Under the labor contract agreed in November 2011, the top 22 percent of players by service time with at least two years but less than three are eligible for arbitration as long as they had at least 86 days this year. They join the older group of 3-to-6 year players.
From 1991-12, the top 17 percent in the 2-to-3-year group had been eligible. Under the old rule, the cutoff would have been 2 years, 129 days.
Six extra players qualified this season under the new rule, with Nelson joined by Chicago White Sox outfielder Dayan Viciedo, San Francisco first baseman Brandon Belt, Tampa Bay right-hander Jake McGee, San Diego right-hander Tyson Ross and Colorado right-hander Juan Nicasio.
The cutoff was down from 2 years, 139 days last winter. Teams can avoid arbitration by failing to offer a contract by the Dec. 2 deadline, which would make the player a free agent.
Also qualifying as so-called "Super 2s" were Kansas City first baseman Eric Hosmer; White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers; New York Mets outfielder Lucas Duda and infielder Ruben Tejada; Tampa Bay catcher Jose Lobaton; Detroit right-hander Al Alburquerque and outfielder Andy Dirks; Cleveland right-handers Vinnie Pestano and Frank Herrmann; San Diego first baseman-outfielder Jesus Guzman; Atlanta left-hander Mike Minor; Chicago Cubs right-hander Pedro Strop; Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Mike Baxter; Miami right-hander Steve Cishek; Milwaukee first baseman Juan Francisco; Minnesota third baseman Trevor Plouffe; Oakland right-hander Fernando Rodriguez; Philadelphia outfielder Ben Revere; Pittsburgh catcher Michael McKenry.
Three players who would have been eligible no longer are on 40-man rosters: pitchers David Purcey and Wade LeBlanc, and catcher Guillermo Quiroz.
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