The offseason is officially here. The Los Angeles Dodgers won the World Series and now it’s time for teams to try and build a team to win the next one. There are some dates this offseason that are more important than others.
October 30th is the date in which options need to be decided on by either the player or the team that holds the option. For the Cincinnati Reds specifically, that means the decision must be made by Nick Castellanos as to whether or not he’s going to return for the 2021 season and be paid $14,000,000.
Two days later on November 1st is officially the day in which free agency begins and teams can sign anyone who is a free agent. It’s unlikely anyone actually signs on this day. November 1st is also the day in which eligible players have to be extended the qualifying offer. Cincinnati can extend that to free agents Trevor Bauer, Anthony DeSclafani, or Freddy Galvis. One of those guys will actually get the offer.
November 9th through 12th will be the days in which the Major League Baseball awards will be announced. The Rookie of the Year Award will be first, announced on the 9th. It will be followed by Manager of the year on the 10th, the Cy Young Award winners on the 11th, and the Most Valuable Player Award on the 12th. Each award will be announced on MLB Network at 6pm ET.
November 11th is the last day that players have to accept or reject a qualifying offer.
November 20th is the date in which teams must add eligible minor league players to the 40-man roster in order to protect them from the Rule 5 draft. This year players drafted in 2016 or earlier, or college players selected in 2017 must be added in order to be protected. International players who were signed in 2016 or earlier also need to be protected.
December 2nd is the non-tender deadline. This is when teams can choose to offer a contract to a player who hasn’t yet reached free agency as long as they want to keep them on the 40-man roster and go through the arbitration process with them. If they don’t want that, they will non-tender the player and that player will become a free agent.
December 10th is the date in which the Rule 5 draft will be held.
January 15th is the date when the international signing period begins. This usually happens on July 2nd each summer, but with all that took place this summer, Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association agreed to push back the signing date to mid-January.
Mark your calendars.