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Yanks extend qualifying offer to LeMahieu

@BryanHoch
November 2, 2020

NEW YORK -- The Yankees have extended a qualifying offer to DJ LeMahieu, ensuring that they will receive Draft compensation if the Major League’s leading hitter leaves via free agency. LeMahieu has until Nov. 11 to decide if he will accept or decline the offer, valued at one year and

NEW YORK -- The Yankees have extended a qualifying offer to DJ LeMahieu, ensuring that they will receive Draft compensation if the Major League’s leading hitter leaves via free agency.

LeMahieu has until Nov. 11 to decide if he will accept or decline the offer, valued at one year and $18.9 million. LeMahieu is expected to reject the offer, as the 32-year-old seeks a multiyear contract in free agency. LeMahieu is coming off a successful run in pinstripes, having earned $24 million over two years.

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In 50 games in 2020, LeMahieu paced the Majors with a .364 batting average while leading the American League in on-base percentage (.421), OPS (1.011) and OPS+ (177). LeMahieu, who led the National League in hitting while with the Rockies in '16, has expressed his desire to remain in New York.

“I want to stay here. I’ve said that a few times,” LeMahieu said in September. “I thought I was going to stay in Colorado, and I didn’t. I’m hoping to be back here. You just never know how it goes."

If LeMahieu signs with another club, the Yankees would receive a compensatory pick in next year’s MLB Draft.

The Yankees did not extend a qualifying offer to right-hander Masahiro Tanaka, who celebrated his 32nd birthday on Sunday. Tanaka was 3-3 with a 3.56 ERA in 10 starts for New York this past season, during which he would have earned $23 million had the schedule not been shortened.

Free-agent left-handers J.A. Happ and James Paxton also did not receive qualifying offers.

Bryan Hoch has covered the Yankees for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and Facebook.