MLB’s free agency period began at 12:01 AM EST, which means that players are now free to sign with other teams. For the Pirates, that means that Jason Grilli, Kevin Correia, and Chad Qualls are now free agents. Here are some other notes on free agency this year.
**The process for draft pick compensation has changed. There are no more Type A or Type B free agents. There are only qualifying offers of $13.3 M. If a team makes a player a qualifying offer, and the player signs elsewhere, the team gets a compensation pick. The signing team would forfeit their first round pick, rather than the old method of giving that pick to the former team.
**Nine players were tendered offers this year. Those players are Kyle Lohse, Adam LaRoche, Nick Swisher, Hiroki Kuroda, Rafael Soriano, David Ortiz, Michael Bourn, B.J. Upton, and Josh Hamilton. Ortiz already agreed to a deal with the Red Sox, so there are only eight players remaining.
**Only the top ten picks are protected. If the Pirates signed one of the above players, they’d forfeit the number 14 overall pick in the draft.
**Jon Heyman had a look at Russell Martin and the weak catching market today, noting the Pirates as a team in need of a catcher and a team that could spend on the position.
**In the next week we’ll take a look at the available free agents and potential trade candidates for each position of need for the Pirates.
Links and Notes
**The Arizona Fall League Rising Stars game is tonight at 8 PM EST on the MLB Network. Vic Black will be participating in the event, representing the Pirates.