Qualifying offers from clubs to their own free-agent players, in order to receive Draft-pick compensation in the event they sign with another team, will be more expensive this offseason.
Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association have determined that qualifying offers to eligible free agents will be $14.1 million, which is $800,000 more than they were a year ago, The Associated Press reported on Monday.
Under the current labor agreement, the figure is set by the average of the 125 most lucrative contracts, as detailed by the Basic Agreement.
The deadline for a club to make a qualifying offer to any of its qualifying free agents is 5 p.m. ET on the fifth day following the conclusion of the World Series. A player has until 5 p.m. ET on the seventh day after receiving the offer to accept. If he does so, it takes him off the free-agent market and keeps him with his 2013 team.
Should a player reject a qualifying offer and sign a Major League contract with another club before the next year's First-Year Player Draft, his former team receives a compensation pick at the end of the first round. The club signing the player loses its first-round pick in the Draft, unless that pick is among the top 10, in which case the signing club loses its next-highest pick.
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon.