Today's the deadline for players to decide if they'll accept arbitration offers or not, so we'll be updating this thread during the course of the day with news as it breaks. Here are all the players that were offered arbitration by the Rays:
Type-A Free Agents
Carl Crawford - declined
Rafael Soriano - declined (Jon Heyman)
Grant Balfour - declined
Type-B Free Agents
Randy Choate - declined (Buster Olney)
Brad Hawpe - declined (Jon Heyman)
Chad Qualls - declined
Joaquin Benoit - already signed with Detroit
Soriano and Crawford will obviously decline arbitration, seeking large free agent contracts instead. Recent rumors have Grant Balfour leaning towards accepting the Rays' offer of arbitration, which would be great for the Rays. If Balfour accepts arbitration, that's one less hole we'll need to fill in our bullpen for next season - and he'll likely be signed to a pretty reasonably priced contract.
Official word: Balfour, Choate, the 5 other arb-offered #Rays
decline arbitration, remain free agents
And with that, assuming every player signs a major-league deal with another team, the Rays will receive 10 extra draft picks in the 2011 draft*. Wowzers.