Curtis Granderson turns down offer

Updated: November 12, 2013, 10:15 AM ET
By Andrew Marchand | ESPNNewYork.com

Outfielder Curtis Granderson officially turned down the Yankees' qualifying offer Monday. Granderson is now a free agent.

Robinson Cano and Hiroki Kuroda also declined the $14.1 million qualifying offers. If any of the three sign with another team, the Yankees will receive a sandwich pick between the first and second rounds of the 2014 draft. The Yankees will discuss new contracts with each of them.

"I'd have an interest, clearly, in signing any of them," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said.

Granderson was limited to 61 games in 2013 after breaking his forearm in spring training and a pinkie during the season. He ended the year hitting .229 with seven homers and 15 RBIs. His OPS was .723.

Still, Granderson's agent, Matt Brown, is expected to sell teams on what Granderson accomplished the previous two years. Granderson's 84 combined home runs in 2011 and 2012 were the most in baseball. Granderson hit 47 of those at Yankee Stadium.

Granderson, who turns 33 in March, will be one of the top outfielders on the market. Jacoby Ellsbury, Shin-Soo Choo, Carlos Beltran and Nelson Cruz join Granderson among the best available free-agent outfielders.

Sources have told ESPN New York that the Yankees are interested in Beltran after his two healthy seasons and their belief he will command a shorter deal than other top free agent outfielders. Beltran, who turns 37 next season, just completed a two-year, $26 million deal with the St. Louis Cardinals. He reportedly wants a three- or four-year contract.

The Yankees could have interest in Choo, but that type of long-term expenditure could depend on if they are able to retain Cano. They also could try to re-sign Granderson.

Keeping Cano is the Yankees' No. 1 goal for the offseason.

The team and the All-Star second baseman negotiated during the season, but the Yankees were unwilling to meet Cano's initial demands of a 10-year contract in excess of $300 million. Owner Hal Steinbrenner has publicly stated they will not do a decade-long contract. The Yankees are expected to draw the line in the seven or eight-year, $180-$200 million range. Cano will likely not make a decision until December, at the earliest.

The Yankees would also like to retain Kuroda. Last November, the team signed him to a one-year, $15 million contract. If Kuroda wants to return, the Yankees are interested in keeping him at a similar salary.

"He's got a lot of choices," Cashman said.

Kuroda, 38, could play for the Yankees or another major league team. He could return to finish his career in Japan. Or he may retire.

At the moment, the Yankees have only two definites in their 2014 rotation, CC Sabathia and Ivan Nova.

Adam Rubin of ESPNNewYork.com contributed to this report.

Andrew Marchand is a senior writer for ESPNNewYork. He also regularly contributes to SportsCenter, Baseball Tonight, ESPNews, ESPN New York 98.7 FM and ESPN Radio. He joined ESPN in 2007 after nine years at the New York Post. Follow Andrew on Twitter »

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