Archive

Catcher Martin, pitcher Liriano reject qualifying offers from Pirates | TribLIVE.com
Pirates/MLB

Catcher Martin, pitcher Liriano reject qualifying offers from Pirates

PTRBucs02111114
Christopher Horner | Trib Total Media
Pirates pitcher Francisco Liriano talks to catcher Russell Martin on the mound during a game against the Cardinals on Aug. 25, 2014 at PNC Park.
170770402
Getty Images
Pirates catcher Russell Martin talks with pitcher Francisco Liriano during the third inning against the Reds on Monday, June 17, 2013.

It will take a lot more than $15.3 million for the Pirates to re-sign Russell Martin or Francisco Liriano.

Martin and Liriano on Monday each rejected a $15.3 million qualifying offer from the Pirates.

They both crave the security of a multiyear contract, which is a big reason they will test the free agent market.

“We remain open to a potential return to Pittsburgh for each player,” general manager Neal Huntington said via an email sent by the Pirates.

If either signs with another team this offseason, the Pirates will receive a compensatory draft pick after the first round. That could give the Pirates three selections, including their own first-rounder, among the first 40 picks in the draft.

Since the process began two years ago, none of the 34 players who have received a qualifying offer has accepted it.

Martin, 31, batted .290 with 11 homers and led everyday National League catchers with a .402 on-base percentage.

He is regarded as one of the best defensive catchers in the game.

The top catcher available this winter, Martin reportedly already has met with Chicago Cubs officials. The Toronto Blue Jays and Los Angeles Dodgers also are expected to make a pitch for him.

Manager Clint Hurdle on Friday said the Pirates will make “a very serious offer” for Martin. That echoed Huntington’s earlier statement that the team is willing to “stretch” to re-sign Martin.

Jeff Blair of Sportsnet Canada reported Martin is seeking a contract similar to the $85 million, five-year package the New York Yankees gave Brian McCann last offseason. Those kinds of dollars and years likely will be out of the Pirates’ reach, even if they stretch.

Liriano, 31, is among the better starting pitchers available. The left-hander, who went 23-18 with a 3.20 ERA over the past two seasons in Pittsburgh, could command a three-year, $36 million contract.

Rob Biertempfel is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at [email protected] or via Twitter @BiertempfelTrib.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.