The deadline for teams to issue qualifying offers is on Monday at 5pm EST. Between now and then, we’ll likely hear some chatter about players that likely will or will not receive the QO. It’s valued at $17.4MM this year. Those who need to brush up on the new rules should read this primer.
While quite a few situations are obvious (in either direction), it’s worth bearing in mind that there have been surprises in the past. The Rockies dropped a QO on Michael Cuddyer in 2014, for example, while the Nationals decided against giving one to Edwin Jackson back in the QO’s first year of operation (2012), only to see him sign a four-year deal with the Cubs.
Here’s the latest chatter from around the game:
- The Royals, unsurprisingly, will issue qualifying offers to each of their three major free agents, per Jon Heyman of Fan Rag (via Twitter). Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, and Lorenzo Cain each feature prominently on MLBTR’s ranking of the top 50 free agents — indeed, all are rated among the seven most valuable players on the open market — so it’s hardly surprising to learn that K.C. is going in this direction. That said, there had been at least some suggestion that the team had yet to decide on Cain, who is a fair bit older than the other two departing core members of the Royals’ memorable 2014-15 teams. He still figures to be in high demand as the best-available center field on the upcoming market. All told, it’s hard to imagine a scenario where any of these three players accepts the qualifying offer, meaning that the Royals ought to be lined up for a nice haul of draft picks once the dust settles. (Of course, it’s also still possible that one or even more than one of these players will return to Kansas City, in which case no draft compensation would be triggered for that player.)