UPDATE: Scot Gregor at the Daily Herald speaks to a “source” and says there aren’t any such restrictions:
One source scoffed at the logic, considering Viciedo accumulated only 83 days of major-league service last season and couldn’t become a free agent until amassing the required six years.
… “There is no magic date next week,” the source said Saturday. “I have seen some of the speculation out there, but a lot of it is based upon not having a full understanding of the rules.”
… Had Viciedo played enough to qualify for salary arbitration by the end of the current season — which he hasn’t — the 22-year-old right fielder could have voided the final year (2012) of his deal, giving the Sox the option of triggering a $3.5 million option.
… “A lot of misinformation,” the source said. “He is not a free agent until he gets six years of major-league service like anyone else.”
UPDATE: 1 year of service time is 172 days. 172-83=89. So, about 3 months. Hmmm, this is very close. I don’t know if the conspiracy theory isn’t true. I guess, we’ll see…