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All nine players who received qualifying offers will reject them

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Jon Heyman reports that all nine of the players who received qualifying offers — Carlos Santana of the Indians, Mike MoustakasEric 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 RasmusMatt Wieters and Brett Anderson in 2015.

Rockies, Trevor Story agree on two-year, $27.5 million contract

Trevor Story
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ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Rockies and shortstop Trevor Story have come to terms on a two-year, $27.5 million deal, buying out his two remaining years of arbitration eligibility.

Story, 27, and the Rockies did not agree on a salary before the deadline earlier this month. Story filed for $11.5 million while the team countered at $10.75 million. The average annual value of this deal — $13.75 million — puts him a little bit ahead this year and likely a little bit behind next year.

This past season in Colorado, Story hit .294/.363/.554 with 35 home runs, 85 RBI, 111 runs scored, and 23 stolen bases over 656 trips to the plate. He also continued to rank among the game’s best defensive shortstops. Per FanGraphs, Story’s 10.9 Wins Above Replacement over the last two seasons is fifth-best among shortstops (min. 1,000 PA) behind Alex Bregman, Francisco Lindor, Xander Bogaerts, and Marcus Semien.

With third baseman Nolan Arenado likely on his way out via trade, one wonders if the same fate awaits Story at some point over the next two seasons.