Detroit's offseason planning took an expected turn on Friday, when Rick Porcello opted out of his contract in order to reach a different agreement. Porcello, who has garnered enough service time to reach Super Two status, appears to be in line for a substantial raise via arbitration.
Porcello, the 27th overall pick in the 2007 First-Year Player Draft, signed a lucrative big league contract as a prospect that would've paid him $1.34 million in 2012. Porcello's decision to opt out means that the Tigers will have five players in line for arbitration cases this spring.
Dave Dombrowski, Detroit's general manager, has yet to go all the way to an arbitration ruling since taking the reins in 2002. The club and arbitration-eligible players will have until January 17 to exchange salary proposals, and the arbitration cases would be decided in February.
Porcello, just 23 years old, has gone 38-30 with a 4.54 ERA in 89 big league starts. The right-hander posted a 14-9 record and a 4.75 ERA in 2011, when he set career highs in innings (182) and strikeouts (104). Porcello has made at least 27 starts in each of his three big-league seasons.
Four other Tigers -- outfielder Delmon Young, utilityman Don Kelly and pitchers Phil Coke and Max Scherzer -- are eligible for arbitration.
Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.