The New York Yankees made a three qualifying offers this past week to Curtis Granderson, Robinson Cano and Hiroki Kuroda. This means each of their free agents were offered a one-year, $14.1 million deal for 2014 seasonbut it also guarantees if any of the three sign elsewhere the Yankees a receive a compensatory draft pick between the first and second round from the player’s new team.
With the Yankees missing the 2013 MLB postseason for just the second time in 19 seasons, the need to get back to October is immeasurable. And now with sportsbook odds suggesting that the Yankees are not one of the top favorites to win in 2014, inherited owner Hal Steinbrenner has to give GM Brian Cashman much leeway to field a World Series caliber team in2014.
I can guarantee you that Cano will definitely reject the offer, as he is the most coveted free agent on the market and will get a monster deal; hopefully one that will keep him in the Bronx.
As for Kuroda, he might retire from MLB to go home and finish his career in his native Japan. Otherwise if Kuroda wants to pitch one more season in MLB and wear the pinstripes, he would be stupid not to accept this offer.
The Yankees paid Kuroda $15 million last season, and even though he was on CY Young pace over the first half of 2013, his age started to show in the second half. Kuroda will turn 39-years old this February, and there is no way he will get more than $14.1 million for the 2014 season. No doubt Kuroda would get multiple offers, but it would be more around $10-$13 million range. So unless he wants to wear another uniform, Kuroda should ink this qualifying offer.
Granderson has a more complicated situation. He spent almost all last season on the DL, which certainly lowered his stock value. Other teams will be interested in Granderson, and he will likely receive a few offers at around three to four years, at $10-$12 million a season.
Problem for Granderson is he likes being a Yankee, and has stated publicly that he would like to stay here. So if he decides to reject the qualifying offer and test the free agent market there is no guarantee the Yankees will go after him. Granderson’s power bat is well worth the money for New York to pay for one season, as his swing is tailored to hit homers in Yankee Stadium.
If I were Granderson, I would take the Yankees qualifying offer because if he remains healthy in 2014 and knocks the snot out of the ball, he would definitely get a multi-year deal from New York next off-season.
The players with qualifying offers on the table have until 5pm this Monday, November 11th to give their current team an answer.
So for now, I am keeping my fingers crossed in hopes that the Grandyman stays put.