New York Mets righthanded pitcher Marcus Stroman is still a New York Met, and is not a free agent, as he has accepted the qualifying offer tendered to him by the Mets per multiple reports. Stroman will be playing in 2021 under a one year deal for the qualifying offer tender amount of $18.9 million.
There were six free agents who received the qualifying offer at the end of the 2020 season, with the deadline to accept or reject the offer being today. Stroman was one of the three players we identified as being a candidate to accept. Stroman missed the beginning of the 2020 season with a torn calf muscle, and then once he had been on the injured list long enough to accrue the service time necessary for him to be eligible for free agency after the season, he opted out of the remainder of 2020. Given the uncertain nature of the free agent market this offseason, and the fact Stroman didn’t pitch in 2020, him accepting and re-entering the free agent market next offseason — when the Mets will be barred from making the qualifying offer again, and thus would not cost a signing team draft pick compensation — appears to be the smart move.
The other two players we identified as candidates to accept the qualifying offer were New York Yankees infielder D.J. LeMahieu and San Francisco Giants pitcher Kevin Gausman. LeMahieu has reportedly rejected the qualifying offer already. Gausman, who seemed like the most likely candidate to accept, is apparently weighing multi-year offers, and may end up rejecting the qualifying offer.
Trevor Bauer, J.T. Realmuto and George Springer all were considered locks to reject the qualifying offer, and are hitting the free agent market.