So the 2013 season pretty much turned out to be one of the worst seasons for Yankees fans since 2004: the Boston Red Sox won the World Series which would understandably make any Yankee fan cringe. Now, it’s the first official day of the offseason for all 30 teams, meaning that the Hot Stove season is right around the corner. So what exactly happens now as we hastily close the book on a dreadful year and look forward to 2014?
October 31, 2013: Eligible players that were on their teams 40-man roster yesterday are now free agents. That includes 13 Yankees: Joba Chamberlain, Phil Hughes, Hiroki Kuroda, Boone Logan, Andy Pettitte, Mariano Rivera, Robinson Cano, Lyle Overbay, Mark Reynolds, Brendan Ryan, Kevin Youkilis, Curtis Granderson and Travis Hafner. We could already take out Pettitte and Rivera since they’re retired so that leaves the Yankees with 11 players going into free agency for next season. None of the players that are heading to free agency are automatic locks to rejoin the team but pending that they would like to play next season, the players that would make the most sense are Kuroda, Logan, Cano, Granderson and Reynolds. Chamberlain and Hughes carry too much baggage while Youkilis and Hafner are literally the walking wounded.
November 4, 2013: It’s the last day for teams to make qualifying offers to their players. It would make the most sense for the Yankees to offer Cano, Kuroda and Granderson a qualifying offer. We all know Cano won’t take it and Kuroda most likely won’t take the offer either. There’s still Curtis Granderson who can toy with the idea of signing for a one-year contract in order to build up his free agent value. He also could decline and test the free agent market.
November 5, 2013: Free agents that are on the market may sign with any team. Robinson Cano is the Yankee that will test the free agent market for certain, again Granderson would be pending. Maybe this gives Mark Reynolds a chance to re-negotiate with Brian Cashman. Reynolds said a couple days after the season ended that he wanted to come back to the Yankees, which I personally have no problem with.
November 11, 2013: It’s the final day for players to accept their qualifying offers. There’s a good chance everyone that is offered a qualifying offer will decline in hopes to receive more money or more years with the team. That’s when the real negotiation begins.