Jon Heyman reports that all nine of the players who received qualifying offers — Carlos Santana of the Indians, Mike Moustakas, Eric Hosmer, and Lorenzo Cain of the Royals, Lance Lynn of the Cardinals, Alex Cobb of the Rays, Greg Holland of the Rockies, and Jake Arrieta and Wade Davis of the Cubs — will reject them.
The qualifying offer is extended by the last club to employ free agents and guarantees them a one-year contract at $17.4 million if they accept it. Players who received a qualifying offer have until November 16 to accept or reject the offer. If they reject, the team gets draft pick compensation and the club which signs one of the free agents loses a pick.
It’s not surprising that the current free agents to whom offers were extended will reject them.
Moustakas and Hosmer are both under 30 and can expect multi-year offers. Santana and Cain are each above average everyday players who can likewise expect to find better deals than 1-year, $17.4 million. Pitching is always at a premium on the open market, so a former Cy Young winner like Arrieta, a couple of 30-year-old starters like Lynn and Cobb and a couple of top closers in Davis and Holland should do OK too.
If Heyman is right about this, it will be the first time since 2014 when no one has accepted an offer. Five players have accepted qualifying offers in the past: Jeremy Hellickson and Neil Walker last year and Colby Rasmus, Matt Wieters and Brett Anderson in 2015.
We’re entering what is typically one of the slowest news weeks in the baseball calendar. Occasionally some big free agents sign around now. For example, it was 20 years ago today Andres Galarraga signed with the Braves, and I still remember being in an airport on the way home to visit my parents when I heard the news. I’m an old man.
The biggest news that is likely to happen this offseason is Giancarlo Stanton being traded. That hasn’t happened yet, but here are the latest bits of news on that:
Jon Morosi of MLB Network reports that the Cardinals have made a formal trade offer to the Marlins for Stanton. No word what they’re offering, but the clubs have been in discussion for some time and it has been reported that the Marlins are the most interested in doing a deal with St. Louis due to the prospects they could send to Miami. There is a sense, however, that Stanton would be hesitant to approve a trade to the Cardinals because he prefers to play on the West Coast;
The Giants play on the west coast, and over the weekend they were reported to be the “most aggressive team” in trade talks for Stanton at the moment. Ken Rosenthal reports that the Giants have likewise made an offer. Their farm system is nowhere near as stocked as that of the Cardinals, so it’s unclear whether they have the prospects to make Miami happy. They could, of course, eat a lot of Stanton’s $295 million contract to make up for that, of course, but (a) doing so would put them over the luxury tax; and (b) the Marlins no doubt want to spur a rebuild with a Stanton trade, so if they can’t get some blue chip prospects back in return, what’s the point?
UPDATE: Who knows if this is anywhere close to enough — I’m guessing not — but this is what the Giants reportedly have on the table:
Anyway, that’s where we are as we begin Thanksgiving week.