Monday, November 4, 2013

Yankees Extend Qualifing Offers to Trio

Curtis Granderson has some thinking to do.
Robinson Cano, Curtis Granderson, and Hiroki Kuroda have big decisions to make this off-season. The three are free agents, but each is looking for something very different than the other two. With that in mind, the Yankees extended a $14.1MM one-year qualifying offer to each player.

By extending the offer, the Yankees would receive draft pick(s) if any of the players signed with another Major League team.

There's absolutely no chance that Cano accepts the offer, but Granderson and Kuroda will probably at least consider it. Granderson played in just 61 games in 2013 due to a broken forearm and broken finger that occurred when bone met baseball.  His production- a career worst .723 OPS and .407 slugging pct. - was not conducive to landing a big money, long term free agent deal this off-season.

It's possible that Granderson could accept the qualifying offer in the hopes that he has a very productive season as he did in 2011 (.916 OPS, 41 HR, 119 RBI, 136 runs scored) and then could land a big money deal next off-season. The Yankees would certainly welcome him back on a one year, $14.1MM contract, which would be a slight pay cut for Granderson from last year's $15MM salary.

Rumors say that the White Sox and/or Cubs are preparing big offers for the Chicago native, but until that actually happens, they will remain just rumors.

Kuroda was the Yankees ace in 2013 until the 38-year old wore down during the last month of the season. He turned down the $13.1MM qualifying offer the Yankees tendered in 2013 and signed a one-year deal for $15MM. Should Kuroda decide not to retire and not return to Japan, he's likely to turn down the qualifying offer again.

Should that be the case, the Yankees have to decide whether Kuroda is worth pursuing on another one year deal that would likely cost them a minimum of $15 - 16MM. As good as Kuroda was for the majority of the season, the Yankees front office should be thinking "take it or leave it" this time around.

The Yankees did not extend offers to pitchers Phil Hughes, Joba Chamberlain and Boone Logan, infielder Brendan Ryan, corner infielders Kevin Youkilis and Mark Reynolds, DH Travis Hafner, and first baseman Lyle Overbay. Reynolds and Ryan are likely the only two of the group that the Yankees have any interest in bringing back.

In the meantime, Cano is probably out shopping for a very large vault.

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