Explaining MLB's 'qualifying offer'

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Explaining MLB's 'qualifying offer'

The Red Sox have seven free agents from their 2012 roster Aaron Cook, James Loney, Daisuke Matsuzaka, Vicente Padilla, Scott Podsednik, David Ortiz, and Cody Ross. The team must decide by 5 p.m. today whether to make a qualifying offer to these players.

As part of the current collective bargaining agreement, in effect for 2012-2016, the concept of qualifying offers is in play for the first time. Which brings up several questions, including: What is a qualifying offer? How is it determined? What does it mean for the player and the team?

Players no longer have to declare free agency, as they have in the past. Now, players automatically became free agents at 9 a.m. the day after the World Series ended in this case, Monday. Teams have a five-day window of exclusivity, known as the quiet period, which began Monday and expires at 11:59 ET tonight, in which they alone can talk with their players who are free agents. When that expires players may talk to any team.

The amount of the qualifying offer for this year is determined by averaging the top 125 salaries of 2012. That amount is likely to change each year. The qualifying offer for this year is 13.3 million. If the player accepts the qualifying offer from the Sox, he will stay with the team for 2013 at a salary of 13.3 million. If he declines, he is free to negotiate with other teams. A player has until 5 p.m. seven days after the qualifying offer deadline, in this case Nov. 9, to decide whether to accept or decline the qualifying offer.

The Sox must make a qualifying offer to a player if they want to receive a compensation pick in the 2013 draft in the event the player signs with another team. If they do not extend a qualifying offer to a player and the player signs with another team, they will not receive a compensation pick in next years draft. Compensation picks will be made in the 2013 draft after the first round. (The team that signs such a player would have to forfeit a first-round pick except for the top 10 picks. That forfeited pick would not go directly to the team which the player left. But, thats a primer for another day.) There are no more Type A and Type B classifications of free agents.

Of the Red Sox group of free agents, Ortiz is the only player to whom they would consider making a qualifying offer. Ortiz, however, made 14.75 million in 2012 and would likely reject a qualifying offer. The designated hitter, who turns 37 on Nov. 18 and who just completed his 10th season in Boston, would prefer a two-year deal. If he rejects the qualifying offer, the Sox can continue to negotiate with him until he agrees to a contract with the Sox or another team. The Rangers are also reportedly interested in him.

Report: Patriots, Gronkowski restructure contract for 2017 season

Report: Patriots, Gronkowski restructure contract for 2017 season

The Patriots and Rob Gronkowski have restructured the tight end’s contract for the coming season, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. 

The reworked deal can bump Gronkowski’s salary for the 2017 season from $5.25 million to $10.75 million, according to Schefter. 

From Schefter on Facebook:  

Specific details on Rob Gronkowski's new deal with Patriots, per @RosenhausSports:

1st tier, which gets him to $10.75M either 90 percent play time or 80 catches or 1200 receiving yards or All Pro -- and he's made All Pro four times.

2nd tier to $8.75M: he has to get 80 percent play time or 70 catches or 1000 receiving yards or 12 TDs.

3rd tier takes him to $6.75M is 70 percent playtime, 60 receptions, 800 receiving yards or 10 TDs.

But a big new groundbreaking deal for Gronk.

Gronkowski was limited by injury to just eight games last season. He had 25 receptions for 540 yards and three touchdowns, all of which were career lows. 

The 28-year-old is entering his eighth NFL season since being selected by the Pats in the second round of the 2010 draft. He has played played in at least 15 regular-season games in four of his first seven season, though he’s twice played fewer than 10. 

Brandin Cooks ready to bring back arrow celebration after NFL rule change

Brandin Cooks ready to bring back arrow celebration after NFL rule change

Tuesday’s announcement from Roger Goodell that the NFL is “relaxing” its rules on celebrations is good news for at least one Patriot. 

That would be Brandin Cooks, who began celebrating the rule change on Twitter not long after the league made its announcement. 

Cooks, whom the Patriots acquired from the Saints this offseason in a trade that sent first and third-round picks to New Orleans, lost his favorite celebration last season when it was made clear that miming archery was off-limits. Josh Norman was fined $10,000 last season for such a celebration. 

Following Norman’s fine, Cooks lamented the league’s decision to punish what Cooks had previously done in reference to a Bible verse (Psalms 144:6). 

"Send forth lightning and scatter your enemy, and shoot your arrows and rout them," Cooks told the New Orleans Advocate. "I just remember it sticking with me for such a long time, I remember thinking, maybe I can do something with this."

Added Cooks: ”I’ve been doing it for three years now, and there was never a complaint about it. Now, all of a sudden, there is. It just reminds me that, it's almost as if they try to take so much away from us, but for something like this, that means so much to someone that has nothing to do with violence, it's frustrating. I'll definitely continue to speak my opinion about it, and if they have a problem with it, so be it."

When Tuesday’s news emerged, Cooks and former Saints teammate Mark Ingram were quick to react.