All nine free agents whose teams extended them qualifying offers for the 2018 season rejected the offer and will instead hit the open market, seeking multiyear deals.
Teams had until 5 p.m. ET last Monday to extend their prospective free agents a qualifying offer -- a one-year contract worth $17.4 million (the amount is the mean salary of MLB's 125 highest-paid players). Nine players received such an offer and had 10 days to accept or reject it. The deadline was Thursday at 5 p.m.
The qualifying offer system has been in place since the 2012-13 offseason. No one accepted the qualifying offer in the first three years, and a total of five accepted over the past two offseasons, for a combined five acceptances out of 73 in the first six years of the QO system. The rules regarding Draft pick compensation for signing players who rejected QOs changed a bit with the implementation of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement prior to the 2017 season, and the penalties for signing such players are less strict.
Here are the nine free agents who received (and rejected) qualifying offers from their teams and what Draft compensation those teams stand to receive if the players sign elsewhere (a complete breakdown of the rules can be found below):
Cardinals - Lance Lynn: Pick after Competitive Balance Round B
Cubs - Jake ArrietaWade Davis: Pick after Competitive Balance Round B
Indians - Carlos Santana: A) If he signs for at least $50 million: Pick between 1st round and Competitive Balance Round A B) If he signs for less than $50 million: Pick after Competitive Balance Round B
Rays - Alex Cobb: A) If he signs for at least $50 million: Pick between 1st round and Competitive Balance Round A B) If he signs for less than $50 million: Pick after Competitive Balance Round B
Rockies - Greg Holland: A) If he signs for at least $50 million: Pick between 1st round and Competitive Balance Round A B) If he signs for less than $50 million: Pick after Competitive Balance Round B
Royals - Eric HosmerMike MoustakasLorenzo Cain: A) If any of them signs for at least $50 million: Picks between 1st round and Competitive Balance Round A B) If any of them signs for less than $50 million: Picks after Competitive Balance Round B.
Under the previous Collective Bargaining Agreement, if a team made a qualifying offer to a player and he signed elsewhere, it would get a supplemental first-round Draft pick (right after the end of the first round). That has all changed.
Under the new rules, if the team that loses the free agent is a revenue-sharing recipient, based on its revenues and market size, then the selection -- if and only if the lost player signs for at least $50 million -- will be awarded a pick between the first round and Competitive Balance Round A of the 2018 MLB Draft. If the player signs for less than $50 million, the compensation pick for those teams would come after Competitive Balance Round B, which follows the second round.
The following 16 teams currently qualify for these picks: A's, Astros, Braves, Brewers, D-backs, Indians, Mariners, Marlins, Orioles, Padres, Pirates, Rays, Reds, Rockies, Royals and Twins.
If the team that loses the player does not receive revenue sharing and did not exceed the luxury-tax salary threshold the previous season, its compensatory pick will come after Competitive Balance Round B. The value of the player's contract doesn't matter in this case. The nine clubs that fall into this category are the Angels, Blue Jays, Cardinals, Cubs, Mets, Phillies, Rangers, Red Sox and White Sox.
If the team that loses the player went over the luxury-tax threshold, the compensation pick will be placed after the fourth round has been completed (as with the previous scenario, it doesn't matter how much the player signs for). The five clubs in this group are the Dodgers, Giants, Nationals, Tigers and Yankees.
Anthony Castrovince/David Adler / MLB.com
 
Giancarlo Stanton of the Marlins and Jose Altuve of the Astros couldn't be more different in stature, but they both spent last season producing at elite levels en route to Major League Baseball's highest individual award.
Stanton and Altuve were unveiled as the National League and American League Most Valuable Player Award winners, respectively, by the Baseball Writers' Association of America on Thursday.
It is the first MVP honor for both players.
Stanton, who is the first player in Marlins team history to be honored with the NL MVP Award, edged Joey Votto of the Reds by two points in the third closest in NL MVP balloting and the fourth overall. D-backs slugger Paul Goldschmidt finished in third place.
Always a premier power threat, Stanton took his reputation to new heights in 2017. He hit 59 home runs, the most by any player in 16 years. Stanton led the Majors with 132 RBIs, a .631 slugging percentage and tied for first with 71 extra-base hits.
 
NL MVP Award voting
Giancarlo Stanton, MIA
10
10
5
3
1
302
Joey Votto, CIN
10
9
4
5
2
300
Paul Goldschmidt, ARI
4
5
4
9
5
239
Nolan Arenado, COL
2
3
8
11
4
229
Charlie Blackmon, COL
3
3
7
1
5
205
Name, team
1st
2nd
3rd
4th
5th
Pts.
 
The Marlins' right fielder finished in the top five in the big leagues in runs, total bases and OPS, while walking often (85 times) and socking 32 doubles. Stanton set career highs in nearly every offensive category while hitting .281/.376/.631 on the year.
Stanton was dominant from a Statcast™ perspective as well, leading the National League in average exit velocity (91.9 mph), barrels (76), and placing second in average home run distance (min 30 HR).
Buoyed by a midseason swing change, Stanton closed his stance in June and rode the adjustment to an avalanche of second-half success. He slugged .702 with 33 home runs after the All-Star break, including 18 in August, which tied the Major League record for the month set in 1937. His .349/.433/.899 slash line in August rivals the best by any player in any month, and Stanton's sizzling bat single-handedly kept Miami in the NL Wild Card hunt for a while. At one point, Stanton homered in six straight games.
Stanton came close to winning the NL MVP Award once previously, when he placed second in 2014. But a season-ending facial injury cut his year short, ultimately hurting his candidacy.
Altuve was the heartbeat -- and best player -- on the best team in baseball. He won his second consecutive batting title and third in four seasons, hitting .346 with an AL-best 204 hits. He became the first player in Major League history to lead his league in hits four consecutive seasons.
 
AL MVP Award voting
Jose Altuve, HOU
27
3
 
 
 
405
Aaron Judge, NYY
2
27
1
 
 
279
Jose Ramirez, CLE
1
 
22
6
 
237
Mike Trout, LAA
 
 
6
18
3
197
Francisco Lindor, CLE
 
 
 
4
12
143
Name, team
1st
2nd
3rd
4th
5th
Pts.
 
By doing this, Altuve racked up records and laurels. He led the AL in multihit games and infield hits and led the Majors in games with at least three hits. He tied for second in runs (112), third in on-base percentage (.410), third in stolen bases, third in OPS (.957), fifth in total bases (323), sixth in slugging percentage (.547) and tied for ninth in doubles (39).
Altuve also stole 32 bases, eclipsing the 30-steals mark for the sixth consecutive season. He matched a career-high with 23 home runs, drove in 81 runs and slashed .346/.410/.547, while ranking as one of baseball's top two players by bWAR (8.3) and fWAR (7.5).
Altuve is the second player in Astros history to win the award, and the first since Jeff Bagwell in 1994, in the National League. He's the first second baseman to win the award in either league since Dustin Pedroia in 2008.
Yankees slugger Aaron Judge, who captured the AL Rookie of the Year Award on Monday, finished second in the AL MVP Award voting, while Indians third baseman Jose Ramirez wrapped up this breakout season with a third-place showing.
Joe Trezza /MLB.com
 
SEATTLE -- Jerry Dipoto made a habit of moving quickly to fill his offseason wish list during his first two years with Seattle, and the Mariners' general manager is at it again, acquiring young first baseman Ryon Healy from the A's on Wednesday in exchange for right-handed reliever Emilio Pagan and Minor League infielder Alexander Campos.
Healy, 25, put up a .271/.302/.451 slash line with 25 home runs and 78 RBIs in 149 games in 2017 for Oakland in his second season (first full season) in the Majors and is under team control for another five years.   Mariners acquire Ryon Healy from A's  
The A's were willing to move Healy after the development of first baseman Matt Olson and third baseman Matt Chapman left him competing for time at DH, where Khris Davis is expected to get more starts in 2018.
Though he played third base initially for the A's, Healy is a more natural first baseman, and Dipoto expects him to handle that job on a regular basis next year and potentially beyond.
"After going year to year such a long time with first base a question mark, we're hopeful Ryon can step in and solve much of that problem," Dipoto said. "He's a good offensive player who gives us that right-handed power element."
Finding a first baseman figured to be one of Dipoto's primary objectives this winter after Yonder Alonso and Danny Valencia both became free agents. Dipoto made 15 offseason trades last year in his second season as Mariners GM. This is his first of the current winter, coming as the General Managers Meetings wrap up in Orlando, Fla.
Healy will make close to the MLB minimum for the next two years before becoming arbitration-eligible. His salary will allow Dipoto to spend elsewhere in free agency, and also eliminates the need for a platoon situation at first base.
"For us, that creates flexibility in other areas," Dipoto said. "We have a couple other needs we'd like to address, not the least of which is adding an element to the outfield, and we'd also like to add to our pitching staff where possible. The flexibility he provides to our roster gives us some ability to do some more creative things in other areas."
Healy played 78 games at designated hitter for the A's last season, in addition to 39 games at first base and 34 at third. The 6-foot-4, 232-pound right-handed hitter batted .314 with a .526 slugging percentage against lefties, but also had 21 doubles and 18 homers with a .257 average in 439 at-bats against right-handers.
"The opportunity ahead is very exciting," Healy said from Miami, where he was visiting friends this week during a break from his offseason work in Southern California. "Obviously they have a ton of professional players, and I'm beyond excited to learn from them and try to help them get to the next level."
Healy made his Major League debut with the A's on July 15, 2016, and played 72 games that season, hitting .305 with 13 home runs while being named to Baseball America's All-Rookie team while playing primarily at third base.
Healy was a third-round Draft pick by the A's in 2013 out of the University of Oregon.
To get Healy, the Mariners gave up a versatile reliever in Pagan, who was one of the team's pleasant surprises in '17 as a rookie. The 26-year-old went 2-3 with a 3.22 ERA and racked up 56 strikeouts in 50 1/3 innings over 34 appearances.
"He had a great year," Dipoto said. "In addition to a great job on the mound, he's just a wonderful human being, a very likable guy. I've done this a fair amount over the last 6-7 years, and some phone calls are tougher than others. That one was tough because of the kind of person he is."
Pagan, who pitched for Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic, recorded his first big league win at Oakland on Aug. 9 with 2 2/3 scoreless innings. He opened the season at Triple-A Tacoma, where he went 2-1 with a 2.56 ERA and five saves in 23 outings.
Pagan was a 10th-round Draft pick of the Mariners in 2013 out of Belmont Abbey College in North Carolina.
Campos, a 17-year-old out of Venezuela, hit .290 with two home runs and 26 RBIs in 59 games for the Dominican Summer League Mariners in his first year of pro ball. He played primarily at shortstop, but also appeared in games at second and third base, as well as designated hitter.
Greg Johns / MLB.com
 
No strangers to the Cy Young Award, Max Scherzer and Corey Kluberonce again proved themselves as aces among aces in 2017. Now, they're back atop baseball's pitching totem pole.
Scherzer won his third career National League Cy Young Award and Kluber his second American League Cy Young Award on Wednesday night, when the Baseball Writers' Association of America handed out the pitching prize on MLB Network. Scherzer, who also won it with the Nationals in 2016, became just the 10th pitcher in history to take home the award in back-to-back seasons and also the 10th to win it at least three times overall. Kluber is the 19th pitcher to win multiple Cy Young Awards and the first member of the Indians to do so. This brings Scherzer even with Clayton Kershaw, who finished second in the NL voting. Kershaw was hoping to become just the fourth pitcher in history to win the Cy Award a fourth time. Scherzer's Nats teammate, Stephen Strasburg, finished third in the NL voting. The 33-year-old Scherzer won his first Cy Young Award with the Tigers in 2013, and he has finished in the top five in the voting every year since. In 2017, he earned the award with a 16-6 record and 2.51 ERA amid 200 2/3 innings and league highs in strikeouts (268), WHIP (0.90) and hits allowed per nine innings (5.7). The WHIP and hits per nine marks were career-bests for Scherzer, as was his rate of 12 strikeouts per nine innings. Workload was a separator for Scherzer, as Kershaw and Strasburg had been limited by injury to 175 and 175 1/3 innings pitched, respectively. Kluber, who previously won the Cy Young Award in 2014, was also limited by injury in 2017, but he came roaring back from an early back issue to storm past Boston ace Chris Sale in the AL Cy Young race. When Kluber returned from the disabled list on June 1, he was carrying a 5.06 ERA. But over the course of his final 23 starts of the regular season, Kluber posted a 1.62 ERA with a .175/.213/.283 opponents' slash. It helped Kluber's cause that his Indians teammates scored 14 runs (13 earned) off Sale in two August appearances. Kluber wound up leading all Major League qualified starters in ERA (2.25), complete games (five), shutouts (three), ERA+ (202), WHIP (0.87) and strikeout-to-walk ratio (7.36) while tying for the lead in wins (18). The missed time did not prevent Kluber from crossing the 200-inning threshold for the fourth straight season. Sale finished second in the AL voting in his first year with the Red Sox, with Yankees right-hander Luis Severino wrapping his breakout year with a third-place showing.
Anthony Castrovince /MLB.com
 
BOSTON -- Baseball Hall of Famer Bobby Doerr, whose steady brilliance on the field was matched by an unflappable grace off of it, died Monday in Junction, Ore., at the age of 99.
Until his death, Doerr was the oldest living Hall of Famer, as well as the oldest living former big league player.
"Bobby Doerr was part of an era of baseball giants and still stood out as one himself," said Red Sox owner John Henry. "And even with his Hall of Fame achievements at second base, his character and personality outshined it all. He will be missed."
Doerr played his entire 14-season Major League career with the Red Sox between 1937-51, missing '45 while serving during World War II.
The second baseman was known as the "silent captain" on the strong Red Sox teams of the 1940s and early '50s that also included Ted Williams, Johnny Pesky and Dominic DiMaggio.
The late Pulitzer Prize winner David Halberstam wrote the well-received 2003 book "Teammates" about the poignant and long-lasting friendship shared by those four men.
In particular, the close friendship between Williams and Doerr -- which started in 1936 when they were teammates with San Diego of the Pacific Coast League -- was compelling because of their opposite personalities.
As Halberstam wrote, "Ted somehow understood that he needed Bobby's calm, and he seized on his friend's maturity and took comfort in it from the start."
Those who knew Doerr best said that he was so mild-mannered, it was difficult to remember a swear word ever coming out of his mouth. Doerr was known for his exemplary work habits, quiet confidence and the ability to lead by example.
Doerr was the first baseball Hall of Famer who lived to be 99 years old.
"Bobby's life is one we salute not only for its longevity, but for its grace," said Red Sox chairman Tom Werner. "He set the standard for what it means to be a good teammate through abiding friendships with Ted Williams, Johnny Pesky and Dom DiMaggio, all while realizing legendary status on the diamond. He touched us all with his class and dignity, and will remain an example and an inspiration for generations of players to come."
"There is something fitting about Bobby Doerr becoming the patriarch of baseball, outliving all of those he played with and against," said Red Sox president/CEO Sam Kennedy. "Bobby was a special player, to be sure, a Hall of Famer, but he also commanded universal respect from all those fortunate enough to have crossed his path. We celebrated his return every time he came back to us here at Fenway Park, and we now mourn his passing, grateful for the wonderful memories he left."
From a team standpoint, the highlight of Doerr's career was in 1946, when the Red Sox went 104-50 and lost to the Cardinals in a seven-game World Series. But Doerr's talent shone through in that Fall Classic, as he hit .409 against St. Louis.
The one regret for Doerr in his career was that he was never able to play for a World Series winner. He often lamented how different things could have turned out if three key Red Sox pitchers -- Boo Ferris, Tex Hughson and Mickey Harris -- hadn't had sore shoulders in 1947. Medical science was not as advanced at the time, and none of those three pitchers ever returned to form. Boston fell one win short of the American League pennant in '48 and '49.
Doerr once confided to longtime Boston television personality, poet and author Dick Flavin, "If that didn't happen to our pitchers, we'd be reading about the Red Sox dynasty instead of the Yankees dynasty."
Still, when the Red Sox finally did win the World Series in 2004, snapping an 86-year drought, Doerr was one of several former players who received a ring. He was overjoyed by the gesture from team ownership.
"[Owner] John Henry called me and said he would like to give me a ring and wanted to know what my size was," Doerr said in 2005. "I tell you, when he said that, actually I had some wet eyes. I thought that was quite a nice gesture for them to do that. We had our chance in '46, '48, '49. I just think the Red Sox are just a wonderful organization."
Williams died in 2002, but Doerr remained close with DiMaggio and Pesky until their deaths in '09 and '12, respectively.
"To be friends of 65 years or more ... I talk to Dom once every 10 days, two weeks. We still keep in touch with Johnny," Doerr said in 2005. "They're coming out for a fishing trip in September, we're going to catch some big salmon on the Rogue River."
Yes, fishing. That might have been the only thing Doerr was as accomplished at as he was hitting a baseball. It was a skill and pastime Doerr shared with Williams. Together, they would often fish in the Florida Keys if Williams was hosting, or in Oregon near Doerr's home.
On a more personal side, friends marveled at the way Doerr took care of his wife, Monica, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in the early 1940s. Until Monica's death in 2003, Bobby was known to dote on his wife and give her the best care possible.
Doerr's playing career was cut short by back woes, but he was elected into the Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee in 1986. His retired uniform No. 1 is displayed on the right-field facade at Fenway Park.
"Bobby was not only an exceptional player, but a gentleman to his friends and to his fans," said Baseball Hall of Fame chairman Jane Forbes Clark in a news release. "He has been, and always will be, held in the highest regard by the Hall of Fame board of directors, the Hall of Fame members, and by its staff. Bobby's passing has affected us deeply, and we send our heartfelt sympathy to his family."
A nine-time AL All-Star, Doerr belted 223 homers over his career while notching 1,247 RBIs. He produced a solid line of .288/.362/.461. Doerr made his debut for the Red Sox at 19 years old.
The nine All-Star Game selections for Doerr rank fourth in Red Sox history behind Williams, Carl Yastrzemski and David Ortiz. Doerr ranks in the top 10 among Red Sox players all-time in most offensive categories, including games, runs, hits, singles, doubles, triples, home runs, RBIs, walks, extra-base hits, total bases and times on base.
There were always debates in the 1940s over who was the best second baseman in the AL -- Doerr or Joe Gordon, who played for the Yankees and Indians and was inducted into the Hall of Fame by the Veterans Committee in 2009.
Aside from his offensive heroics, Doerr was known for his rock-solid defense at second base. He led AL second basemen in fielding percentage six times and in double plays five times. Doerr once held the AL record for most consecutive chances at second base without an error (414). In 1969 and again in '82, Red Sox fans voted him the team's all-time best second baseman. Doerr played in more games at the position (1,852) than any other player in Red Sox history, and he ranks first all-time in Red Sox history for homers by a second baseman.
Doerr also did the little things, evidenced by his 22 sacrifice hits in 1938.
After his retirement, Doerr scouted for the Red Sox for close to a decade and was the first-base coach on the "Impossible Dream" AL pennant-winning team of 1967.
Though Doerr couldn't accompany Pesky and DiMaggio in what amounted to a farewell trip to see Williams in Florida in 2001, he was on everyone's mind. Flavin was also on that trip.
"Someone said, 'Jeez, it's too bad Bobby can't be here,"' Flavin recalled. "Pesky said, 'Yeah, but we wouldn't be able to talk this way if Bobby was here.' The language quickly deteriorated into locker-room kind of language, because Ted was leading the conversation. Not that Dom or Johnny in their normal conversation wouldn't talk that way, but it deteriorated into locker-room kind of talk, and they wouldn't do that if Bobby was around."
Doerr was born in Los Angeles, but he settled in Oregon in the 1930s, claiming primary residence there for the rest of his life. Until a few years ago, when he moved into a nursing home, Doerr continued to search for the big fish on those quiet lakes of Oregon.
The last public appearance for Doerr in Boston was the lavish 100-year anniversary celebration of Fenway Park in April of 2012. On a sun-splashed afternoon, former Red Sox pitcher Tim Wakefield brought Doerr onto the field in a wheelchair, while Jason Varitek did the same for Pesky.
Cardinals legend Red Schoendienst, at 94, is now the oldest living Hall of Famer. The 10-time All-Star played from 1945-63, spending 15 of his 19 seasons with St. Louis.
Chuck Stevens is now the oldest living former Major Leaguer. Born on July 10, 1918, the 99-year-old former first baseman played for the St. Louis Browns (now Orioles) in 1941, '46 and '48.
For 38 years, Stevens was secretary of the old Association of Professional Ball Players of America (APBPA), which helped former baseball people in need -- a precursor to today's Baseball Assistance Team.
Doerr is survived by his son, Don, and Don's wife, Wendy Dame; his grandson, Brad, and Brad's wife, Jennifer; his granddaughter, Mischel Lowenberg, and her husband, Jason; and his great-grandchildren, Jackson, William, Allison and Reese.
Ian Browne / MLB.com
 
The Twins' Paul Molitor was named the American League Manager of the Year and the D-backs' Torey Lovullo was announced as the National League Manager of the Year by the Baseball Writers' Association of America on Tuesday.
Both managers presided over huge turnarounds by their teams from 2016 to '17 and guided their clubs to the postseason. Molitor helped transform the Twins from a 103-loss, last-place team in 2016 to a surprise AL Wild Card team this season. Lovullo, in his first year as the D-backs' manager, led them to a win in the NL Wild Card Game and an NLDS appearance, after Arizona finished fourth in its division a season ago.
Under Molitor and Lovullo, the Twins made their first postseason since 2010, and the D-backs made their first playoffs since '11. Minnesota jumped from a 59-103 record to an 85-77 mark, a difference of 26 wins. Arizona jumped 24 wins, finishing 93-69 in 2017 after posting the exact opposite record, 69-93, the year before.
Following the announcement, make your voice heard by voting for Best Manager in the Esurance MLB Awards, where baseball legends, media, front-office personnel and fans come together to pick the winners, with postseason accomplishments factored in. Then tune in Friday at 8 p.m. ET on MLB Network and MLB.com as this year's best stars and moments are revealed.
This marks the third Manager of the Year honor for both the Twins and D-backs franchises. Minnesota last had a Manager of the Year in 2010, when Ron Gardenhire won in the Twins' last playoff season; their other Manager of the Year was Tom Kelly in 1991. For the D-backs, Kirk Gibson was named NL Manager of the Year in 2011 -- their last playoff appearance before Lovullo brought them back -- and Bob Melvin won the award in '07.
Lovullo is only the eighth skipper to capture a Manager of the Year Award in his first full season as a Major League manager -- but this is actually the fourth consecutive season with a first-year winner. Dave Roberts, a runner-up this year, was Manager of the Year as a first-time manager for the Dodgers in 2016, as was Jeff Banister for the Rangers in '15 and Matt Williams for the Nationals in '14.
Molitor can now add a new type of trophy to his resume after his Hall of Fame career as a player. In fact, he is now just the second person to make the Hall of Fame as a player and then go on to become a Manager of the Year. The other: Frank Robinson, who was AL Manager of the Year for the Orioles in 1989.
David Adler / MLB.com
 

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American League MVP

1. Jose Altuve- Astros

2. Aaron Judge- Yankees

3. Jose Ramirez- Indians

                                                                       

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National League MVP

1. Giancarlo Stanton- Marlins

2. Paul Goldschmidt- D-backs

3. Nolan Arenado- Rockies

                                                                               

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

 

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American League Cy Young

1. Corey Kluber- Indians

2. Chris Sale- Red Sox

3. Luis Severino- Yankees

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

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National League Cy Young

1. Max Scherzer- Nationals

2. Clayton Kershaw- Dodgers

3. Stephen Strasburg- Nationals

                                         

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American League Rookie Of The Year

1. Aaron Judge- Yankees

2. Andrew Benintendi- Red Sox

3. Trey Mancini- Orioles

                                     

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National League Rookie Of The Year

1. Cody Bellinger- Dodgers

2. Josh Bell - Pirates

3. Paul DeJong- Cardinals

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American League Manager Of The Year

1. Paul Molitor- Twins

2. Terry Francona- Indians

3. A.J. Hinch- Astros

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National League Manager Of The Year

1. Dave Roberts- Dodgers

2. Torey Lovullo- D-backs

3. Bud Black- Rockies

 
AL Rookie of the Year Voting
 

Aaron Judge, NYY
30


150
Andrew Benintendi, BOS

23
6
75
Trey Mancini, BAL

5
16
31
Matt Olson, OAK

1
2
5
Yuli Gurriel, HOU


5
5
Jordan Montgomery, NYY
NL ROOKIE OF THE YEAR VOTING
Cody Bellinger, LAD
30
150
Paul DeJong, STL
15
11
56
Josh Bell, PIT
10
2
32
Rhys Hoskins, PHI
1
9
12
German Marquez, COL
2
4
10
Manuel Margot, SD
1
2
5
Kyle Freeland, COL
1
3
Luis Castillo, CIN
1
1
Ian Happ, CHC
1
1
 
ORLANDO, Fla. -- Two years after rejecting a lucrative five-year contract that would have extended his successful tenure as the Blue Jays' general manager, Alex Anthopoulos has accepted the challenge of guiding the Braves past recent problems and toward what could be a very bright future.
Braves CEO and chairman Terry McGuirk appeared both excited and relieved during a Monday afternoon news conference at SunTrust Park. As he introduced Anthopoulos as the team's new executive vice president and general manager, he also seemed to distance himself from the frustration created by an ongoing MLB investigation that necessitated this change.
"I can't say enough about what I feel about where I feel the organization is going," Anthopoulos said. "I view this as one of the premier jobs in all of sports with the young talent that we have here. There are some dynamic young players. There's no question that we certainly expect big things moving forward."
Anthopoulos was given a four-year deal that runs through the end the of 2021 season. The 40-year-old Montreal native was scheduled to fly to Orlando late Monday night to attend MLB's annual General Managers Meetings.
With arguably baseball's best farm system and the significant revenue opportunities SunTrust Park and its surrounding mixed-use development could provide, the Braves certainly have reason to be excited about what the future could provide.
But the club's long-term future will be influenced by the severity of the penalties issued at the conclusion of the ongoing investigation into infractions committed within the domestic Draft and within the international market. Former general manager John Coppolella was forced to resign on Oct. 2, and president of baseball operations John Hart had to relinquish his involvement in baseball operations as he was moved to a senior advisor's role on Monday.
With Hart in his new role, Anthopoulos will run the baseball ops department and report directly to McGuirk.
"The past few months have been the toughest in the storied history of the Atlanta Braves franchise," McGuirk said. "Frankly, the Braves have not lived up to our standard that the fans expect of us and what we expect of ourselves. On behalf of the entire Braves family, I want to apologize to the fans and our partners. We've let you down, and we will work to regain your trust, which actually begins today with this announcement."
As the Braves began their search, they targeted Royals senior VP and general manager Dayton Moore, who is recognized as a strong leader who could restore internal morale and regain external trust with fans, executives, agents and players. But because Kansas City's ownership never provided permission to speak to Moore, McGuirk began focusing on Anthopoulos, who made a strong impression on Bobby Cox and others when he came to Atlanta for an interview on Oct. 30, between Games 5 and 6 of the World Series.
When Anthopoulos returned to Los Angeles the next day and continued his duties as the Dodgers' vice president of player development, he told his wife about the connection he'd made with McGuirk and spoke glowingly about the chance to work in Atlanta.
"I told my wife, 'This is as good a job as I'm ever going to be able to find. I'd love to get it,'" Anthopoulos said. "That two-week wait, I was on pins and needles a little bit. I tried to play it cool, but it was tough. It was tough. I was still trying to do my work in L.A. and can't say enough about them being able to support me, but I can't say enough about the upside here and what we're ultimately going to be."
While serving as the Blue Jays' general manager from 2009-15, Anthopoulos never shied away from the opportunity to make a significant trade, some of which improved the team's strength in the Draft or on the international market. He ended his tenure in Toronto shortly after his autonomy was threatened by the arrival of CEO and team president Mark Shapiro.
Before beginning the interview process, the Braves made it clear Anthopoulos would have full autonomy with the baseball operations department.
"I didn't have any aspirations or desire to leave L.A.," Anthopoulos said. "I was thrilled. My family had moved there and so on, but I was blown away spending the night with these guys, and like I had said, I think I was open-minded going into it. And my wife had even told me, 'I've never seen you so excited.' It had been a while. So that's when I knew it was the right fit."
Mark Bowman / MLB.com