Joel Sherman of the NY Post hears that the qualifying offer for pending free agents will increase this year to $14.1 M, up from $13.3 M.
I heard qualifying offer for free agents this offseason is going to be $14.1M, up from $13.3M last year. Impacts Cano, Grandy, etc #Yankees
— Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) October 11, 2013
If you’re unfamiliar with the process, teams can issue a qualifying offer to a player who is about to become a free agent. If the player accepts, he gets that price. If he declines and signs with another team, then the former team gets a compensation pick after the first round, while the signing team loses their first round pick.
This is relevant to the Pirates with A.J. Burnett eligible for free agency. If the Pirates make him a qualifying offer, then they can either get him back for the reported $14.1 M, or they could get draft pick compensation if he signs elsewhere. The only way the Pirates don’t benefit in that scenario is if Burnett decides to retire.