One of the more expected qualifying offer moves made on Monday included the World Series champion San Francisco Giants, who extended a $15.3 million offer to third baseman Pablo Sandoval.
The 28-year-old batted .279/.324/.415 with 73 runs batted. His 16 long-balls were his most since the 2011 campaign, but once again, he struggled with weight. However, it hardly appeared to hinder the corner infielder, who put together yet another impressive postseason performance en route to his third World Series ring, batting .429 in the Fall Classic against the Kansas City Royals.
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The fact that the Giants extended a qualifying offer to Sandoval is hardly a surprise given his performance in recent years. However, he is widely expected to pursue free agency, despite his stated desire to return to the Giants. He is said to be seeking a six-figure contract and has been tied to several teams already, including the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox.
According to recent reports, the two sides were still talking extension details, but the talks failed to materialize into a deal. His agent recently spoke to Ken Rosenthal about Sandoval’s 2014 performance, which, he believes will only help his free agent stock this winter.
"“This season, he has once again proven himself to be a leader on and off the field and has shown everyone what he is made of. He is a committed and disciplined player and he would like to be valued as such as a free agent.”"
Back in 2009, Sandoval finished seventh in the balloting for the National League MVP Award, clubbing 25 home runs and driving in 90 runs while batting .330/.387/.556. He has also played an integral part of the Giants’ three World Series in the last five years, emerging as a stable offensive presence in his mid-to-late 20s. Since 2011, Sandoval has not posted a batting average of less than .278.