The Los Angeles Angels doled out just one qualifying offer within their crop of free agents. Closer Raisel Iglesias, coming off a career year with the Angels, was given a one-year, $18.4 million offer. He was just the eighth reliever to get the qualifying offer given the high price tag associated with it.
It put Iglesias in a difficult spot. He had just 10 days to figure out if he could either get more money on a one year deal, the way Noah Syndergaard and Justin Verlander did from the Angels and Houston Astros, respectively. Or he had to try for a multi-year deal, like Liam Hendriks got in 2020.
Clearly, he felt as though one of those two options was in play for him, as he has rejected the Angels’ qualifying offer, according to Jeff Passan of ESPN:
Final tally for the one-year, $18.4M qualifying offer, per sources:
Accepted: Brandon Belt.
Rejected: Nick Castellanos, Michael Conforto, Carlos Correa, Freddie Freeman, Raisel Iglesias, Robbie Ray, Corey Seager, Marcus Semien, Trevor Story, Chris Taylor, Justin Verlander.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) November 17, 2021
This move was somewhat expected, as Iglesias is perhaps the top reliever on the market alongside L.A. Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen. If Hendriks’ 2020 deal can serve as a framework, there was no reason for Iglesias to take a one-year, $18.4 million deal.
So now, there are two main options for Iglesias this offseason. He can still negotiate a deal to stay with the Angels, something that general manager Perry Minasian is very confident they can accomplish. Or he can negotiate with other teams.
If Iglesias chooses to sign with another team, the Angels will receive draft compensation from that club, similar to L.A. sending a second-round pick to the New York Mets by signing Syndergaard.
Giving him the qualifying offer was undoubtedly the correct call. Iglesias enters the 2022 season as one of the top relievers in baseball, and the Angels remain desperate to hold on to any pitching they can find. If Iglesias stays, he helps to bolster their bullpen in a much-needed way.
Minasian initiated full-court press for Syndergaard
Only one week ago, it appeared as though Syndergaard was undoubtedly going to stay with the Mets. However, they ghosted him after giving him the qualifying offer, opening the door for Minasian to go to work.
He flew to New York to meet with the 29-year old ace, detailing their usage plan for him and how he can benefit the Angels. This conversation led to Syndergaard signing a one-year, $21 million deal in Anaheim.