Stephen Drew isn’t in any hurry to sign a less-than-desirable contract.
Drew’s agent, Scott Boras, told ESPN.com’s Jayson Stark that the shortstop and fellow free agent Kendrys Morales don’t plan to lower their sights to sign quick deals and are willing to wait until June to sign contracts if necessary.
Drew and Morales are the only qualifying-offer free agents remaining on the open market. Drew turned down a one-year, $14.1 million qualifying offer from the Boston Red Sox at the beginning of free agency, while Morales rejected the same offer from the Seattle Mariners. Because each player was extended a qualifying offer by his former club, any team — other than the aforementioned former club — that signs either player would need to relinquish a draft pick as compensation. That seemingly has thinned the market for both Drew and Morales, although waiting until after June’s draft to sign remains an option for the duo, as teams no longer would be required to part ways with a pick at that time.
“The system they’ve been dealt has basically prevented them from free agency,” Boras recently told Crasnick. “They want to make sure about their next step, whatever that will be. It means either signing a long-term contract now — and we’re still taking offers on those — or a number of other prospects that could occur after the season starts or in June, after the draft happens.
“Like any players, they want to play baseball. But they’re also looking at the long-term aspect of their careers. This system has placed them not in free agency, but it’s placed them in a jail.”
According to Boras, Drew and Morales work out six days a week at the agent’s sports training institute in South Florida.