The deadline for teams to make qualifying offers of at least $13.3 million for their free agents was 5:00 p.m. this evening and the Yankees made offers to three players — Rafael Soriano, Hiroki Kuroda, and Nick Swisher, according to Danny Knobler of CBS Sports.
Soriano and Swisher are expected to reject their offers while Kuroda may accept his.
Qualifying offers are how team’s get compensation picks for losing their free agents since signing a new collective bargaining agreement last offseason. The old way of Type-A and Type-B free agents is done. Now if a team offers a player a qualifying offer and that player rejects it and signs somewhere else the offering team gets a compensation pick between the 1st and 2nd rounds of next year’s draft.
So if everything does as expected, Soriano and Swisher will reject their offers, sign somewhere else, and the Yankees will get two sandwich picks in addition to their typical 1st round draft choice in the June 2013 draft.
The Yankees also could have made qualifying offers to Mariano Rivera, Andy Pettitte, and Russell Martin, but the former two are likely to retire if they don’t stay with the Yankees and they didn’t want to get stuck paying Martin $13.3 million if he accepted his offer. The Yankees want all three back despite not making a qualifying offer to them.
The Yankees could not make a qualifying offer to Ichiro Suzuki as he did not spend the entire season with them.