Reds make $14.1M offer to Shin-Soo Choo

November 5, 2013
Shin-Soo Choo is not expected to accept the Reds' qualifying offer,

Shin-Soo Choo is not expected to accept the Reds’ qualifying offer of $14.1M.

By Lee Kyutae

The Cincinnati Reds made a $14.1 million qualifying offer to free agent Korean outfielder Shin-Soo Choo on Monday.

It’s nothing to get excited over, however, as Choo is not expected to accept, and the Reds only did it to assure themselves of draft pick compensation if he chooses to leave. Last year, all nine players that received qualifying offers from their teams declined them and eight of the nine signed with a different team.

Choo, 31, has until next Monday to decide.

Choo was one of the best leadoff hitters in the majors with a .423 on-base percentage, a .285 batting average, 21 homers, 54 RBIs, 20 steals and 107 runs scored. Choo also led all Major League leadoff hitters with 116 walks, and was hit by a pitch a Major League-leading 26 times. Overall, Choo reached base safely 300 times during the 2013 season.

Choo’s salary for this year was $7.375 million, and the Reds have offered almost twice that amount for next year, but his agent Scott Boras has indicated that they are looking for a multi-year contract north of $100 million.

The Reds’ position is that if Choo accepts the offer, they’d be happy to have him for another season at $14.1 million, and if he doesn’t, they’ll at least get compensation in next June’s amateur draft.

All compensatory picks come between the first and second rounds, and are made in reverse order of winning percentage.

However, the Reds don’t do that for everyone, as they have decided not to make offers to four other players with expired contracts, including 14-game winning starting pitcher Bronson Arroyo. In other cases, the Reds decided that the draft pick compensation was not worth the risk of the player actually taking the offer.

Reds general manager Walt Jocketty also indicated that he’d like to keep Choo. “We hope to be able to put something together that might interest him,” Jocketty said. “We think he enjoyed his time with us and would entertain, if we had a competitive offer, to come back with us. We’ll see when the negotiating time comes, but I think he enjoyed playing in Cincinnati and being part of a winning club. Hopefully those are important factors,” he explained.

He also said that he does not expect anything to happen soon.



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