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Front Page: Jake Odorizzi Accepts Qualifying Offer, Will Return To Twins

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#1 John Bonnes

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 04:08 PM

Jake Odorizzi has accepted the Twins' qualifying offer, meaning he will return to the Twins starting rotation in 2020. The news means that the Twins can now plan on Jose Berrios and Odorizzi in their starting rotation, but still have one to three more spots to fill through trades, free agency or promotions from within the organization.Odorizzi's decision means he will return to the Twins for at least one year, at a cost of $17.8M. It is also possible that the Twins could work out a longer contract with Odorizzi, locking him up for more years and more guaranteed money, but at lower cost for this year. That is probably unlikely. The Twins are likely happy with a one-year commitment, and it would certainly pay for Odorizzi to gamble on repeating this season's exceptional performance.

The decision is a natural result of the leverage created when the Twins gave Odorizzi a qualifying offer last week. A qualifying offer is a way teams can get compensation for a free agent who leaves their team. It’s similar to a “franchise tag” in the NFL. A team can give a qualifying offer, which has two parts, one pretty good for the player and one very bad for the impending free agent:
  • It gives the player an offer for a one-year contract at the median salary of the top 100 players in MLB, which this year is $17.8M. The player can accept or reject this offer. That’s the pretty good part.
  • The very bad part is that if the player rejects the offer, any team that signs him will need to give up a second- or third- round draft pick, which hurts the player’s free agent value.
Odorizzi, who is only 29 years old and posted a 3.51 ERA last year, would probably have been offered a three- or four- year guaranteed contract in free agency if no draft pick was attached. But by giving him a qualifying offer, he became less appealing than at least a few other similar free agents who have no such draft pick attached, like Cole Hamels and Dallas Keuchel. Keuchel had a qualifying offer last year, and not only didn't get a multi-year contract, he had to wait until June to sign a one-year (or two-thirds-of-a-year) deal.

Provided Odorizzi has a similar year next year, he should be in a much stronger position next offseason. A player can get a qualifying offer only once in his career, so Odorizzi will be free and clear next year. He’ll still only be 30 years old, and (hopefully) a stronger resume, setting him up for a long-term deal. Maybe most importantly, it’s a weaker free agent class; this 2020 class is unusually strong. Add all that up, and you'll see why we predicted Odorizzi's return last week.

With one formerly open spot now filled in their rotation, the Twins essentially have $52M (per year) to spend on two more free agent starting pitchers, as detailed in our Twins payroll analysis. For an even more detailed breakdown of the payroll and the other options they might have, you can also download our 2020 Offseason Handbook for whatever you feel it is worth.

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#2 MMMordabito

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 04:31 PM

Awesome!

 

... and Wheeler rejected, so he's officially there for the picking.Go get it done Falvine!!

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#3 Vanimal46

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 04:36 PM

Win win all around! Hard not to love this development.
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#4 ashbury

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 04:37 PM

I think this acceptance lends credence that TD's "crowdsourced" estimate for a 3 year contract (at $42M?) might have been closer than some of the higher estimates out there. When the QO gives you almost half of what you'd get for 3 years, bet on yourself and take it, and try again the next year. (Doesn't rule out negotiating an extension, for that matter.) Conversely it was a good QO for the team to offer, but close.

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#5 Hosken Bombo Disco

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 04:46 PM

I agree, a win all around, and... highest single-season salary for a Twins pitcher, ever!
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#6 Mike Sixel

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 04:48 PM

Good news. And, imo, good decision. Next year's pitching FA class is pretty meh, and he won't have a QO, and he'll be 18MM dollars wealthier, give or take.....

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It's been a fun year so far, GO Twins. 


#7 Mike Sixel

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 04:48 PM

 

I think this acceptance lends credence that TD's "crowdsourced" estimate for a 3 year contract (at $42M?) might have been closer than some of the higher estimates out there. When the QO gives you almost half of what you'd get for 3 years, bet on yourself and take it, and try again the next year. (Doesn't rule out negotiating an extension, for that matter.) Conversely it was a good QO for the team to offer, but close.

 

I'm not so sure of that. He gets nearly 18MM, and is a FA next year, in a bad class, and he won't have a QO next year. This might be a "bet on yourself" play.

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It's been a fun year so far, GO Twins. 


#8 Thrylos

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 04:55 PM

The oft unmentioned team benefit of a QO, is that if a player accepts it, he has huge motivation to have a great season before he hits the free agent market for good. The Twins still need a couple of arms ahead of Berrios and Odorizzi to be competitive in the postseason.

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#9 ashbury

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 05:25 PM

I think this acceptance lends credence that TD's "crowdsourced" estimate for a 3 year contract (at $42M?) might have been closer than some of the higher estimates out there. When the QO gives you almost half of what you'd get for 3 years, bet on yourself and take it, and try again the next year. (Doesn't rule out negotiating an extension, for that matter.) Conversely it was a good QO for the team to offer, but close.

 

I'm not so sure of that. He gets nearly 18MM, and is a FA next year, in a bad class, and he won't have a QO next year. This might be a "bet on yourself" play.

Thought that's what I was saying...

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#10 dgwills

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 05:38 PM

What I really like about this is that it shows Odorizzi is confident he will be good next year. I think it's time for the Twins to go all in for a title shot! At least as far as spending in free agency. Need to keep some high end prospects to replace players we will not be able to afford in a couple years.

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#11 jaimedude2

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 06:08 PM

Glad Odorizzi is back in the fold. Wish it were a longer term contract or the team could negotiate something longer at least a 3-4 year deal. 

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#12 rdehring

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 06:28 PM

This is great news.The Twins now have two of their top three starting spots filled.Need two more.If they don't get a fifth starter, have no problems letting the four young kids battle it out in spring training.

 

Also hope the Twins talk to him about an extenstion.But doubt any of those discussions will take place until closer to ST when they know how the winter settled out.

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#13 nicksaviking

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 06:28 PM

This could also indicate that at least as far as Odorizzi’s research goes, free agent pitchers may not be getting paid as much was the pundits expect.

Which is also good for the Twins.
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#14 Wax off

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 06:49 PM

Glad Odorizzi is back in the fold. Wish it were a longer term contract or the team could negotiate something longer at least a 3-4 year deal.


I like that it's only one year. We need arms badly and Odorizzi is a good start. I like him but we need to try to improve the rotation at the top. We need to spend our money and/or tradeable prospects on top of the rotation guys that would precede Odorizzi in the rotation. Same for Berrios. If Berrios is our ace, than we should still be looking for an ace.

We were desperate to fill out the rotation this year with only Berrios coming back, so this is great news. But now we need to add to the top of the rotation making everyone better. Cole and Strasburg may prefer other destinations to Minnesota, so then we have to go hard after Wheeler and Ryu, get one of those guys hopefully, or even better both.

Hamels doesn't have a QO and wouldn't cost a draft pick. Same for Ryu. Here's a rotation with 3 FAs (4 if Odorizzi included) but only one draft pick lost:

Wheeler, Berrios, Odorizzi, Ryu, Hamels.

It's going to cost more than $52 million, but Wheeler and Ryu would be on multi year deals and put us in good position when Odorizzi leaves next off season.

#15 tarheeltwinsfan

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 06:53 PM

YES ! And that's all I've got to say about that.

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#16 Dman

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 07:18 PM

I am happy we have another pitcher in the stable. Just need at leasttwo more really good arms. Kind of hoping they can bring back Pineda and then get a top guy in free agency.Need two more solid arms to be able to compete would be nice if one was as a top of the rotation starter.

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#17 Badsmerf

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 07:48 PM

Awesome. Great start to the off-season. I hope he has a good start to the year and is rewarded with a long term deal by the Twins. Seems like a pretty good dude that competes every night.
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#18 VATwinsFan

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 07:49 PM

No Will Smith though.3 years for $40 million with Atlanta.


#19 Zephrin

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 07:52 PM

 

I like that it's only one year. We need arms badly and Odorizzi is a good start. I like him but we need to try to improve the rotation at the top. We need to spend our money and/or tradeable prospects on top of the rotation guys that would precede Odorizzi in the rotation. Same for Berrios. If Berrios is our ace, than we should still be looking for an ace. We were desperate to fill out the rotation this year with only Berrios coming back, so this is great news. But now we need to add to the top of the rotation making everyone better. Cole and Strasburg may prefer other destinations to Minnesota, so then we have to go hard after Wheeler and Ryu, get one of those guys hopefully, or even better both. Hamels doesn't have a QO and wouldn't cost a draft pick. Same for Ryu. Here's a rotation with 3 FAs (4 if Odorizzi included) but only one draft pick lost: Wheeler, Berrios, Odorizzi, Ryu, Hamels. It's going to cost more than $52 million, but Wheeler and Ryu would be on multi year deals and put us in good position when Odorizzi leaves next off season.

Personally, I think $52M is high - especially for multi-year commitments.Remember, the young bats are entering/in arbitration and they will cost more so funds need to be available on that side of the ledger.I hope they find a way to pick up a true ace and I'm ok with paying a premium for that service.But as a team that will have some level of payroll limitations it would be prudent to reserve at least one spot, and maybe two, for developing talent.If the Twins grab 1 big gun and go into the season with Odorizzi as their #3, bring in a veteran innings-eater at the #4, and let Smeltzer/Dobnak/Thorpe/Graterol fill out the back end I would be fine with the decision.If the young guys don't develop or there are injuries they can make a splash at the deadline.But for now some level of payroll flexibility is what will help the Twins keep their window open for more years.  

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#20 Mike Sixel

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Posted 14 November 2019 - 08:10 PM

 

Personally, I think $52M is high - especially for multi-year commitments.Remember, the young bats are entering/in arbitration and they will cost more so funds need to be available on that side of the ledger.I hope they find a way to pick up a true ace and I'm ok with paying a premium for that service.But as a team that will have some level of payroll limitations it would be prudent to reserve at least one spot, and maybe two, for developing talent.If the Twins grab 1 big gun and go into the season with Odorizzi as their #3, bring in a veteran innings-eater at the #4, and let Smeltzer/Dobnak/Thorpe/Graterol fill out the back end I would be fine with the decision.If the young guys don't develop or there are injuries they can make a splash at the deadline.But for now some level of payroll flexibility is what will help the Twins keep their window open for more years.  

 

Twins have 50-70MM in payroll room this year. Next year Cruz, Cron, and probably Rosario are off the books. They have plenty of money to keep the window open. I do agree that leaving the fifth spot open makes sense, but not the 4th. Not on a team that thinks it is a WS contender. At some point, you play for now.....at least somewhat. 

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It's been a fun year so far, GO Twins.