Jeremy Hellickson Extended Qualifying Offer
The Phillies extended a Qualifying Offer to Jeremy Hellickson before the 5PM deadline yesterday. He was one of ten players who received the qualifying offer and the only starting pitcher. Reliever Kenley Jansen also received the offer from the Dodgers. Here is a list of all the players to receive the QO:
As you can see, Jeremy Hellickson falls right near the average player to receive a QO. This validates the opinions of our staff from several weeks ago. It may seem weird to see Jeremy Hellickson among the top free agents this year, but after a surprisingly effective 2016 and a free agent class that’s bereft of talent, that’s exactly where he belongs. MLBTradeRumors has him as their No. 7 Free Agent this year, predicting a 4 year, $60 million contract, so don’t expect him to accept the Qualifying Offer. If Hellickson moves on from the Phillies, the team that signs him will be required to give up their top unprotected draft pick, and the Phillies will get a compensatory draft pick at the end of the first round.
This is only tangentially related to the Phillies, as they weren’t involved in the transaction, but Phillies Legend Carlos Ruiz was traded yesterday from the Dodgers to the Mariners for left-handed reliever Vidal Nuno. Following a thoroughly ordinary 2016 (7.82 K/9, 1.69 BB/9, 1.69 HR/9 in 58.2 innings), Nuno will likely provide depth for the Dodgers’ bullpen. Fun fact: he is one of only three relievers to allow as many or more home runs than walks in 2016, along with Carlos Villanueva of the Padres (who is somehow only 33) and Hector Rondon of the Cubs.
Chooch was bound to get traded or not have his option picked up after the season due to the presence of starter Yasmani Grandal and prospect Austin Barnes on the Dodgers roster. However, he did bounce back from his terrible 2015 to post a 99 wRC+ in part time duty in 2016, which must have been enough for the Mariners to pick up his $4.5 million option for 2017. He will back up the perpetually mediocre Mike Zunino, who spent 79 games in the minors in 2016. There’s a chance for Chooch to get some decent playing time for the Mariners.