Technically, arbitration hearings begin today in Phoenix, Arizona, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that all unsolved cases will go before an arbiter. I don’t have much of an update on where David Freese and the Cardinals stand, but I am still confident that they will get something done before resorting to going before a judge.

David Freese recently filed a salary of $3.75 million while the Cardinals countered with $2.4 million, putting the mid-point at just under $3.1 million. I think you can identify with both sides. On one hand, Freese made just over $500,000 in 2012, so anything that comes even close to $3 million is a huge increase in salary. Having said that, you could make the case that Freese, regardless of what salary he ends up with between $2.4 million and 3.75 million, he would easily be one of the top players in the game making that type of salary.

You also wonder if John Mozeliak is thinking about a substantial long-term contract for Freese sometime in the near future and how that’s impacted the team’s counter-offer. Considering Freese wouldn’t be a free-agent until 2016, you would have to think that that kind of deal would still be a couple of years away, but that doesn’t mean Mozeliak and his staff haven’t started at least entertaining the idea. At the end of the day, it’s quite clear that Freese could be one of those true franchise players that would be worth the Cardinals’ time to try and figure out a situation in which both parties will be happy. While going to a hearing does not necessarily ruin the relationship between a player and the front office, it certainly doesn’t improve it.

If you have thoughts on David Freese and the arbitration situation, feel free to DM us on Twitter @thecardsblog or you can e-mail me personally at [email protected]