Bryce Harper
Getty Images

Seven players receive qualifying offers for 2019

8 Comments

A record-low seven MLB players received qualifying offers before the 5 PM EDT deadline on November 2. They’ll each have 10 days to mull over the decision to accept or reject the one-year, $17.9 million contract before entering free agency this winter.

In no particular order, these are the seven prospective free agents for whom an offer is currently on the table:

Of the seven listed, all but Ryu are expected to decline the offer and pursue more lucrative multi-year deals elsewhere. It’s not immediately clear whether Ryu intends to turn down a one-year deal with the Dodgers, as 2018 saw the injury-plagued southpaw work through a lengthy stint on the 60-day disabled list after sustaining a gruesome groin strain in early May. He finished the season with just 15 starts for the club, during which he pitched to a 7-3 record with a 1.97 ERA, 1.6 BB/9 and 9.7 SO/9 over 82 1/3 innings. While he’s been lights-out on the mound when healthy, there’s no guarantee he’ll be able to pitch injury-free in 2019.

There’s also a case to be made for Dodgers’ backstop Yasmani Grandal, who followed up a relatively solid performance during the regular season with a discouraging slump in the playoffs. As the Dodgers moved within sight of a championship title, the veteran catcher was charged with three passed balls and two errors in 13 appearances behind the plate and batted just .138/.265/.276 with two extra-base hits and 15 strikeouts in 34 PA. Postseason performances often make for poor sample sizes, though, and it’s possible that Grandal will be inspired to seek greener pastures when November 12 rolls around.

Several dozen eligible players have not received qualifying offers from their respective teams this year, including the Astros’ Charlie Morton, Indians’ Michael Brantley, Giants’ Hunter Pence, Rockies’ DJ LeMahieu, Athletics’ Jed Lowrie, and Yankees’ CC Sabathia.

Oakland Athletics reverse course: will continue to pay minor leaguers

Getty Images
1 Comment

Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that Oakland Athletics owner John Fisher has reversed course and will continue to pay minor leaguers. Fisher tells Slusser, “I concluded I made a mistake.” He said he is also setting up an assistance fund for furloughed employees.

The A’s decided in late May to stop paying paying minor leaguers as of June 1, which was the earliest date on which any club could do so after an MLB-wide agreement to pay minor leaguers through May 31 expired. In the event, the A’s were the only team to stop paying the $400/week stipends to players before the end of June. Some teams, notable the Royals and Twins, promised to keep the payments up through August 31, which is when the minor league season would’ve ended. The Washington Nationals decided to lop off $100 of the stipends last week but, after a day’s worth of blowback from the media and fans, reversed course themselves.