Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Understanding the Qualifying Offer/Ranking the Free Agents

Well, the World Series is over (at least the Cardinals didn't win), and as of 12:01 Tuesday morning, free agency is officially open.  With this comes the extending of qualifying offers to impending free agents.  What are qualifying offers you ask?? Well here is a quick overview of the process.

-A team can extend a qualifying offer to an impending free agent with at least 1 year of service with the team (Players traded mid-season aren't eligible).  This offer is a 1 year deal, worth 14.1 million dollars (This changes on a yearly basis, the average of the the 125 highest paid players in the league).  

-Once the offer is extended, the player has the option to either decline the offer and become a free agent, or accept the offer and the 1 year, 14 million dollar contract that comes with it. 

-If the player declines the offer, the team can then secure a draft pick as compensation for the player signing with a new team.

-The team who signs this player will lose their first round pick, unless that pick is in the top 10, in which case the team would lose their next pick.  The team who originally extended the original qualifying offer will also receive a compensation pick between the first and second rounds.

13 players received qualifying offers from their teams.  These players are:

Carlos Beltran, Cardinals
Robinson Cano, Yankees
Shin-Soo Choo, Reds
Nelson Cruz, Rangers
Stephen Drew, Red Sox
Jacoby Ellsbury, Red Sox
Curtis Granderson, Yankees
Ubaldo Jimenez, Indians
Hiroki Kuroda, Yankees
Brian McCann, Braves
Kendrys Morales, Mariners
Mike Napoli, Red Sox 
Ervin Santana, Royals

Alright, now that you all hopefully understand the qualifying offer process (Feel free to ask questions if you don't understand it yet), let's rank the top 25 free agents in this year's class.

1. Robinson Cano, 2B
2. Jacoby Ellsbury, OF
3. Shin-Soo Choo, OF
4. Masahiro Tanaka, SP
5. Brian McCann, C
6. Ervin Santana, SP
7. Matt Garza, SP
8. Hiroki Kuroda, SP
9. AJ Burnett, SP
10. Nelson Cruz, OF
11. Carlos Beltran, OF
12. Ubaldo Jimenez, SP
13. Kendrys Morales, 1B/DH
14. Mike Napoli, 1B/DH
15. Ricky Nolasco, SP
16. Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C
17. Joe Nathan, RP
18. Omar Infante, 2B
19. Curtis Granderson, OF
20. Grant Balfour, RP
21. Joaquin Benoit, RP
22. Stephen Drew, SS
23. Jhonny Peralta, SS
24. Bartolo Colon, SP
25. Carlos Ruiz, C

There you have it, The Full Count's top 25 free agents this off-season.  Check back in the next couple of days as I will have my predictions where each player will sign.  If you want to submit your predictions, feel free to email them to with the subject line "Free Agent Predictions" and the winner might receive some sort of prize.

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Thanks for reading and happy off-season!!!