At Pirates Prospects, not only do we cover the entire farm system, but we also focus on the business side of the game, specifically tracking the service time, options, waiver rules, trade rules, and the MLB draft. The rules surrounding these events can be vague, so to clear things up, here are some important dates to remember for the 2011 MLB season.
April 11th - The earliest a player can be called up without using a full year of service time in 2011. A year of service time is 172 days, and being called up on this date would give a player 171 days in 2011.
April 20th - The date which an optional assignment at the beginning of the season becomes official. An option year is only official when a player spends 20 or more days on optional assignment. Anyone who was optioned at the start of the regular season, and wasn't recalled prior to this date, would use an option year. Note that a player can be recalled and optioned as many times as necessary during the 2011 season, and they...
Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.