Catcher Willson Contreras will reportedly not accept his qualifying offer from the Chicago Cubs, according to a tweet from ESPN’s Jesse Rogers on Tuesday
The Cubs, who surprisingly did not trade Contreras at the deadline — a deal sending him to Houston was reportedly nixed by Astros ownership — made the easy call to instead make the one-year, $19.65MM qualifying offer to their longtime catcher.
The veteran is coming off one of his best seasons at the plate this past year. Contreras hit .243 in 487 plate appearances in 2022 to go along with a .349 on-base percentage.
He also added 22 home runs and four stolen bases in those 487 plate appearances, finishing as one of fantasy baseball’s best at his position.
With the backstop declining the offer, Chicago will officially have just one player, Kyle Hendricks, remaining from the World Series-winning 2016 Cubs.
The Chicago Cubs are now entitled to an extra draft pick in 2023, the positioning of which will depend on the value of Contreras’ next contract.
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