The World Series is over, which means the offseason has officially begun. Because their season ended without a playoff appearance, the Yankees got a bit of a head start and used that to sign general manager Brian Cashman to a new contract (his old contract expired at the end of this month). Now that the postseason is over, the offseason schedule is complete. Here’s what’s coming up.
Later today: Eligible players will be declared free agents. The Yankees have 10 major-league players who qualify, most notably Derek Jeter, Dave Robertson, Brandon McCarthy, Hiroki Kuroda and Chase Headley. This should also be the day that Alex Rodriguez’s suspension officially ends.
November 3: Deadline to make qualifying offers. Seems likely Robertson will be the only Yankees player to get one (Hiroki Kuroda is another possibility). Because they were traded mid-season, Headley, McCarthy and Stephen Drew are not eligible for qualifying offers.
November 4: Free agency opens to all teams for all players. Before this date, teams have exclusive rights to negotiate with their own free agents. The market will be fully open on Tuesday.
November 6: Silver Slugger Awards announced. We already know the Yankees have no finalists for Gold Gloves (announced on Nov. 4), but there are no Silver Slugger finalists. Not that the Yankees have a realistic Silver Slugger candidate, either.
November 10: Deadline to accept or reject a qualifying offer. Baseball’s never had an accepted qualifying offer, but that could change this year. After Drew and Kendrys Morales had trouble getting contracts last winter — at least partially because they were attached to qualifying offer compensation — a player like Robertson might choose to accept a significant one-year deal rather than go shopping for a multi-year contract.
November 10-12: General managers’ meetings in Phoenix. Not to be confused with the Winter Meetings, the GM meetings happen too early in the offseason to see a ton of player movement. These meetings are more about rules and business issues.
November 10: Rookie of the Year announced. Dellin Betances will surely be on some ballots, maybe Masahiro Tanaka as well, but Jose Abreu seems to have the American League ROY wrapped up.
November 11: Manager of the Year announced. This is the award I voted for this year, and in my mind, it’s also the most difficult to accurately judge. I think Joe Girardi had a fine year, but he’s not going to be in the mix for this award.
November 12: Cy Young Award announced. Would have been interesting to see whether Tanaka could have stayed in the mix through a full season.
November 13: Most Valuable Player announced. Surely it’s Mike Trout’s turn to win the MVP. Yankees don’t have anyone seriously in the mix. For a while, it seemed Brett Gardner might land a very-bottom-of-the-ballot vote or two, but he’s not a real MVP candidate.
November 20: Deadline to protect players from Rule 5 draft. My sense is that OF Tyler Austin and RHP Branden Pinder are the safest bets to be protected by the Yankees. OF Mason Williams and RHP Mark Montgomery are each high-profile, high-ceiling players who would be Rule 5 eligible as well (but haven’t put up particularly good numbers). 1B Kyle Roller isn’t nearly as high-profile, but he’s performed at a higher level.
December 2: Non-tender deadline. This is basically the last day for Yankees to offer contracts to unsigned players. Esmil Rogers seems to be the Yankees most obvious non-tender candidate.
December 8-11: Winter Meetings in San Diego. Usually a busy time for trades and free agent contracts. Key front office executives from every team gather in one place, and the offseason usually heats up quite a bit.
December 11: Rule 5 Draft. Always happens on the final day of the Winter Meetings. To make a selection, teams must have an open spot on their 40-man roster, and anyone taken in the major-league phase must stay on the big league roster all season. The Yankees lost reliever Tommy Kahnle in last year’s Rule 5.
January 16: Deadline to exchange arbitration figures. Three days after the deadline to file for arbitration — not a particularly meaningful deadline — teams and players actually have to exchange figures. It rarely gets to this point. Even after exchanging figures, contract negotiations can continue until an actual hearing in February.
Associated Press photo