MLB qualifying bid: Brandon Belt accepts Giants’ $ 18.4 million bid; Trevor Story, Robbie Ray, more decline

Wednesday is the deadline for the 14 free agents who received a qualifying bid to accept or reject the $ 18.4 million one-year contract. The qualifying bid is set at the average of the top 125 salaries in baseball, and players who accept it return to their team on that one-year deal, and players who reject it are tied to draft election compensation.

Here are the 14 free agents who received the qualifying offer this year. Only six free agents received it last offseason, and the 14 are the most since a record 20 free agents received the qualifying offer in 2015-16.

  • 1B Brandon Belt, Giants
  • OF Nick Castellanos, Reds
  • DE Michael Conforto, Mets
  • SS Carlos Correa, Astros
  • 1B Freddie Freeman, Braves
  • RHP Raisel Iglesias, Los Angeles
  • LHP Robbie Ray, Blue Jays
  • LHP Eduardo Rodriguez, Red Sox
  • SS Corey Seager, dodgers
  • IF Marcus Semien, Blue Jays
  • SS Trevor Story, Rocky Mountains
  • RHP Noah Syndergaard, Mets
  • UT Chris Taylor, Dodgers
  • RHP Justin Verlander, Astros

Free agents who have been traded at mid-season (such as Kris Bryant, Nelson Cruz, and Max Scherzer) are not eligible to receive the qualifying offer, as are free agents who have received a qualifying offer in advance (such as Kevin Gausman and Marcus Stroman). If you’re wondering why a big name free agent didn’t get the qualifying offer, he’s probably falling into one of those two buckets.

As noted, the deadline to accept or reject the qualifying offer is Wednesday, November 17th. Players can – and have – to make their decision before that date, however. Here’s an update on players who have already made their qualifying bid.

Accepted qualification offer

Despite indications, the two sides will try to work out a new multi-year contract, Belt will accept the qualifying offer and stay with the Giants, reports Joel Sherman of the New York Post. There is no free agent compensation when a player accepts the qualifying offer, so San Francisco will neither receive nor lose a choice. Belt is back with the Giants in the one-year, $ 18.4 million contract, and he will be a free agent again next offseason.

Rejected qualification offer

After choosing from the final two years and $ 34 million remaining in his contract, Castellanos rejected the qualifying offer, reports Bobby Nightengale of the Cincinnati Enquirer. Castellanos has always been a lock to reject it. No chance he would choose from $ 34 million just to turn around and take the qualifying bid of $ 18.4 million. The Reds will receive a compensatory draft option before the third round if Castellanos signs a deal worth less than $ 50 million, and a compensatory draft option after the first round if he signs a contract worth $ 50 million or more. Our RJ Anderson ranked Castellanos the number 14 free agent on the market.

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Conforto will reject the qualifying offer, according to Jeff Passan of ESPN. He appeared to be a candidate to accept it given his fluffy, injury-suspended season, but some early off-season canvasing by agent Scott Boras presumably revealed enough interest in Conforto to reject the qualifying offer. The Mets will receive a compensatory draft option before the third round if Conforto signs a deal worth less than $ 50 million, and a compensatory draft option after the first round if he signs a contract worth at least $ 50 million. Our RJ Anderson ranked Comfort the 23rd free agent on the market.

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No surprise here, as Correa comes from perhaps the best season of his career. He recently won the AL platinum glove, awarded to the single best defensive player in each league. The two-time All-Star also had a fairly productive offensive season as well, posting 131 OPS + with 34 doubles and 26 home runs. Entering his 27-year season as a star offensive and defensive player at a senior position, he is on a monstrous payday.

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As expected, Freeman turned down the qualifying offer. The 2020 NL MVP seems likely to re-sign with the Braves, though if he signs with another team, Atlanta will receive a compensatory pick before the third round.

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Iglesias will reject the Los Angeles qualifier and become a free agent. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports. Iglesias, who turns 32 in January, exits a 2021 season in which he posted a 2.57 ERA and a brilliant 8.58 K / BB ratio in 70 innings for the Angels. He also converted 34 of 39 save opportunities. For his career, Iglesias possesses a strong ERA + of 142.

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As expected, Ray turned down the qualifying offer and will seek a lucrative long-term contract as a free agent. The Blue Jays will receive a compensatory draft pick before the third round if Ray signs with another team this offseason.

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Rodriguez turned down the Red Sox’s qualifying offer and ended up signing a five-year, $ 77 million pact with the Tigers.

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As expected, Seager turned down the qualifying bid, reports Jorge Castillo of the Los Angeles Times. Seager has a nine-figure contract coming this offseason even while tied to a draft pick. Because the Dodgers have paid a luxury tax this season, they will only get a compensatory draft pick after the fourth round if Seager were to sign elsewhere, regardless of contract size. Our RJ Anderson ranked Seager as the Nr. 2 free agent on the market.

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Free agency for the first time around was a bad timing for Semien. His career year was in 2019 and then he had a rough 2020 during the pandemic shortened season. It forced him to take a one-year deal and move positions. His response was to play like 2019 again in 2021, certainly setting himself up for a big, long-term contract this time around. As such, it is no surprise at all that he turned down the qualifying offer.

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Story has not surprisingly rejected the Rockies ’QO and hits the market as part of a deep break class. His underlying indicators on the plate remain strong, especially by the standards of his position, but his annoying dice could be a source of hesitation for some teams. That said, he’s a good consolation prize for teams missing Carlos Correa and Corey Seager.

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Syndergaard rejected the Mets’ qualifying offer in favor of signing a one-year, $ 21 million contract with the Angels.

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Taylor is expected to decline the qualifying offer, reports Jon Heyman of MLB Network. Taylor was reportedly a popular target early in free agency, which is no surprise given his offensive production and ability to play almost anywhere on the field. Similar to Seager, the Dodgers will only get a compensatory draft pick after the fourth round if Taylor would sign elsewhere regardless of contract size because they paid a luxury tax this year. Our RJ Anderson ranked Taylor the number 12 free agent on the market.

There was some thought that Verlander would accept the qualification after making only one start the last two years due to Tommy John surgery, but that did not happen. Verlander has rejected the qualifying offer and will be attached to draft election compensation. If he signs with another team, the Astros will receive a draft pick before the third round as compensation.

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