Outfielder Dexter Fowler will decline the Cubs’ $17.2 million qualifying offer and become a free agent, Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports. Fowler declined his $9 million mutual option for the 2017 season on Sunday.
Though Fowler had a tough time as a free agent last offseason, he’s better suited in this free agent market as it’s weaker and he’s coming off of a better season as a World Series champion. During the regular season, Fowler hit .276/.393/.447 with 13 home runs, 48 RBI, 84 runs scored, and 13 stolen bases in 551 plate appearances. He added five doubles and three homers in 17 postseason games, helping the Cubs defeat the Indians in the World Series.
Fowler reportedly signed with the Orioles on February 23, but the deal never came to fruition. According to Fowler, “[The Orioles] wanted me to pay them what they said the draft choice I was costing them was valued at. They wanted me to pay them for the pick.” As a result, Fowler signed with the Cubs two days later on a one-year, $13 million deal. The rest, as they say, is history.
After a condensed 60-game regular season, the MLB playoffs kicked off this week with an usual 16-team format that you can read more about below, but one of the many questions on everyone’s mind is whether or not fans will be allowed to attend MLB playoff games.
Will fans be allowed to go to MLB playoff games?
There have been no spectators at any games this season but fans will finally have the opportunity to go to the NL Championship Series and World Series at new Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas–one of the few states allowing spectators to attend events this year. The NLCS is scheduled on seven straight days from Oct. 12-18 and the World Series from Oct. 20-28, with traditional off days between Games 2 and 3 and Games 5 and 6, if the Series goes that far. Major League Baseball said Wednesday that about 11,500 tickets will be available for each game.
Below is the format and locations for each round. Unlike the regular season, there will be a bubble setup for each series in the postseason with the exception of the Wild Card round. Click here for the MLB schedule and scoreboard.
MLB Playoffs Format
Wild Card Series (Best-of-three): September 29 – October 2
All games will be held at the higher seed’s ball park.
No. 1 Rays vs. No. 8 Blue Jays
No. 2 Athletics vs. No. 7 White Sox
No. 3 Twins vs. No. 6 Astros
No. 4 Cleveland vs. No. 5 Yankees
No. 1 Dodgers vs. No. 8 Brewers
No. 2 Braves vs. No. 7 Reds
No. 3 Cubs vs. No. 6 Marlins
No. 4 Padres vs. No. 5 Cardinals
Division Series (Best-of-five): October 5 -10
The American League Division Series will be contested at Petco Park in San Diego and Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. The National League Division Series will be held at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas and Minute Maid Park in Houston.
League Championship Series (Best-of-seven): October 11-18
The American League Championship Series will be held at Petco Park in San Diego while the National League Championship Series will take place at Globe Life Field in Arlington.
World Series (Best-of-seven): October 20-28
The World Series will be held at Globe Life Field in Arlington. Home field advantage will go to the team with the best regular-season record.
RELATED: Yanks rally, beat Indians 10-9 to reach ALDS vs rival Rays