The 2023 MLB Season Concludes with the Rangers’ Victory
The 2023 Major League Baseball season came to an exciting end last night as the Texas Rangers emerged victorious over the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Rangers’ triumph has sparked celebrations across Texas, marking the beginning of the offseason for the baseball world. As the players prepare for the upcoming season, free agency has officially commenced for all eligible players.
Free Agency Begins for Eligible Players
Starting today, players who qualify for free agency are now able to explore new opportunities. However, there is a five-day waiting period during which they cannot sign with a new club. While they are unable to join a new team immediately, they have the option to re-sign with their previous club. In fact, Joe Jiménez wasted no time and has already signed with the Atlanta Braves.
MLB Trade Rumors has been diligently preparing for the offseason, providing valuable insights and projections. In early October, we published our annual arbitration projections from Matt Swartz. Additionally, we have been previewing the upcoming free agent class, analyzing each position individually. Our Offseason Outlook series has also offered a comprehensive team-by-team look at the winter ahead. Furthermore, we have examined potential non-tender candidates and players who may receive qualifying offers.
Key Dates for the Winter Ahead
As the offseason progresses, it is crucial to keep track of the key dates that will shape the future of Major League Baseball:
November 2: Free Agency Begins
Eligible players are removed from the roster of the club they finished the 2023 season with. While they can re-sign with their previous club, they must wait five days before signing with a new team. This date also marks the resumption of trades involving players on the 40-man roster.
November 5: Gold Glove Winners Announced
The recipients of the prestigious Gold Glove Awards will be revealed on this day, recognizing the top defensive players in each position.
November 6: Free Agents Can Sign with Any Club
After the five-day waiting period, free agents become eligible to sign with any club. This date also serves as the deadline for decisions on club options, player options, opt-outs, and mutual options. Additionally, teams must determine whether or not to issue qualifying offers to eligible players by 4:00 pm Central time.
November 7-9: General Managers Meeting
General managers from various teams will convene in Scottsdale, Arizona, during this period to discuss potential trades and strategies for the upcoming season.
November 13-16: BBWAA Awards Week
During this week, the Baseball Writers’ Association of America (BBWAA) will announce the winners of several prestigious awards. The Rookie of the Year, Manager of the Year, Cy Young Award, and Most Valuable Player winners will be revealed. The results of these awards can have significant implications on a player’s service time and may even impact draft picks for certain teams.
November 14: Qualifying Offer Decision Deadline
Players who have received a qualifying offer have until 3:00 pm Central time on this date to assess the market before deciding whether to accept it. The qualifying offer amount, which changes annually, is expected to be around $20.5 million this year. To be eligible for a qualifying offer, a player must have spent the entire 2023 season with one club and not have received a qualifying offer before. Teams that sign a player who rejected a qualifying offer may be subject to draft pick forfeiture and potential loss of international bonus pool money, while the player’s previous club receives draft pick compensation.
November 14: Rule 5 Protection Deadline
Teams have until this date to add players to their 40-man roster in order to protect them from being selected in the Rule 5 draft.
November 14-16: Owners Meetings
The owners of Major League Baseball teams will gather in Arlington, Texas, to discuss various matters. One of the significant topics of discussion will be the proposed move of the Oakland Athletics to Las Vegas.
November 17: Non-Tender Deadline
By this date, teams must decide whether to tender a contract to arbitration-eligible players. This decision does not involve agreeing on a salary but rather determines whether the player will remain on the roster or become a free agent. Non-tendered players become free agents without being exposed to waivers.
December 3-6: Winter Meetings
The Winter Meetings in Nashville, Tennessee, are a crucial period in the offseason. Many high-profile free agent signings and notable trades often occur during or around these meetings.
December 5: Amateur Draft Lottery
To discourage tanking, the new Collective Bargaining Agreement introduced a lottery system to determine the order of the amateur draft. Last year, the Pittsburgh Pirates secured the first overall pick through the lottery, which they later used to select right-hander Paul Skenes in July.