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August 17, 2015 6:00 am

Rubbing Mud: Upton and the Shark


Matthew Trueblood

One is a genius, the other's insane. Also, they're both qualifying-offer eligible and haven't yet been traded. What might happen?

In the new era of hard slots and caps on amateur spending, every win by a bad team after the trade deadline actively hurts the franchise. That's one reason why it was surprising and disappointing to see the Padres and White Sox pass on trading away their impending free agents at the end of July. It was a gross and costly error in judgment for both teams, because neither is a real playoff contender, and only optimism raised to a pitch of delusion could have convinced them otherwise. They missed chances to trade valuable short-term assets for longer-term ones, and in so doing, they also retained talent that will make it harder for them to play badly enough down the stretch to achieve the draft position that should be their goal at this point.

August, of course, gives second chances. Some players' trade value is totally quashed by the waiver process, but the qualifying offer system has preserved the leverage of the would-be seller even in August, at least for players good enough to be considered real candidates for an offer. The Padres have just one of those, really: Justin Upton. The White Sox have one, too, in Jeff Samardzija. In each case, though neither player would make it through waivers, the team trying to trade them can present the claiming team with the following ultimatum: make it worth our while, or we'll just keep the guy.

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Why it's time to do away with draft pick compensation.

The most common (and my favorite) type of question that we get for our Effectively Wild email shows goes something like this:

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Ben and Sam discuss who did and didn't get qualifying offers, which player stands to lose the most money as a result, and why the system doesn't make sense.

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Ben and Sam discuss Edwin Jackson and the rest of the Cubs' offseason signings and talk about how the specter of draft-pick compensation is affecting some free agents.

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November 7, 2012 5:00 am

Sobsequy: Let Me Qualify That


Adam Sobsey

What can we conclude from the free agents who did and didn't receive qualifying offers in the first season under the new CBA?

If you are wise, you will dread a prosperity which only loads you with more.           
Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Compensation”

We now know which of the players who qualified for… um, a qualifying offer, received one. They were:

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