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Stras, Rendon receive qualifying offers

@JamalCollier
November 4, 2019

WASHINGTON -- The Nationals extended a qualifying offer to two of their top free agents on Monday. Both Anthony Rendon and Stephen Strasburg received a qualifying offer for 2020, a one-year deal worth $17.8 million, and will have 10 days to decide. Extending the offer is a formality for Washington,

WASHINGTON -- The Nationals extended a qualifying offer to two of their top free agents on Monday. Both Anthony Rendon and Stephen Strasburg received a qualifying offer for 2020, a one-year deal worth $17.8 million, and will have 10 days to decide.

Extending the offer is a formality for Washington, as Rendon and Strasburg are expected to decline. They will be two of the most sought-after players on the market in free agency, commanding multiyear mega-deals coming off strong performances in the 2019 season. Only six of the 80 players to receive a QO have accepted it since the system was implemented in 2012.

Qualifying offer updates

If a player who has declined a QO signs with a new team, his former team receives Draft-pick compensation. If Strasburg or Rendon signs with a new team, the Nationals will receive a pick after Competitive Balance Round B in the 2020 MLB Draft.

The Nats have expressed interest in bringing both Rendon, 29, and Strasburg, 31, back to D.C. next season and plan to pursue both on the open market.

Strasburg, who was named the World Series MVP, just became the first player to go 5-0 in a single postseason with a 1.98 ERA. Along with Gerrit Cole, Strasburg will be one of the top pitchers available, and the Nationals are expected to pursue him aggressively. Rendon will be, perhaps, the best position player available after a season where he was worth 7.0 fWAR, and he was as crucial as anyone to helping lead the Nats to the World Series.

By getting under the Competitive Balance Tax threshold last season, the Nationals also reset their penalties for signing a player attached to a QO. The Nats would lose their second-highest selection in the 2020 Draft and $500,000 from its international bonus pool if they sign a player other than Strasburg or Rendon who received a QO.

Jamal Collier has covered the Nationals for MLB.com since 2016. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier.