Prior to the 2015-16 Major League Baseball free agency period reaching the stage where players could officially sign contracts, there was a period for clubs to extend qualifying offers to their eligible free agents.
For the Los Angeles Dodgers, that meant doling out one-year, $15.8 million offers to Brett Anderson, Zack Greinke and Howie Kendrick. Although a free agent, Jimmy Rollins was not extended the qualifying offer.
Greinke is a lock to reject, Kendrick likely will as well, though there lies some intrigue with Anderson. The left-hander would make history by signing the qualifying offer as he’d become the first player in MLB history to do so.
Despite that not one player has ever signed a qualifying offer, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred doesn’t have issue with that aspect of the free-agency process, via Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports:
Rob Manfred said that the qualifying offers to FA players is working, even though no player has yet to accept an offer.
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) November 10, 2015
The value of the qualifying offer changes from year to year and is determined by averaging the top 125 player salaries from the previous season. Last offseason the the qualifying offer was valued at $15.3 million.
Once a player rejects the qualifying offer, they are free to negotiate with all other teams, as well as with their former club. Teams that sign free agents who turned down qualifying offers lose their first available pick in the upcoming draft.
The top 10 picks are protected, with a club selecting in the top 10 of the draft instead forfeiting their second-highest selection. Last year the Dodgers received a compensatory pick for Hanley Ramirez, who rejected a qualifying offer and signed with the Boston Red Sox.
Anderson is coming off a season in which he managed to remain healthy and set career highs in starts (31) and innings pitched (180.1). He signed with Los Angeles last December on a one-year, $10 million deal. However, me made an additional $2.4 million by reaching incentives in his contract.
Players who were extended qualifying offers have until 2 p.m. PT on Friday, Nov. 13 to formally accept or reject them.