NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
Friday, November 13, 2015, 5:08 PM
As the Mets expected, Daniel Murphy on Friday decided not to accept their qualifying offer for next season, as he anticipates signing a multi-year contract with another ballclub.
As a result, the Mets aren’t expected to seriously pursue Murphy as a free agent, but replace him at second base internally with either Wilmer Flores or Dilson Herrera, or perhaps a combination of the two.
Baseball people anticipate Murphy getting a three or four-year deal somewhere in the range of $ 12-14 million per season.
Murphy could have taken the qualifying offer of $ 15.8 million to remain with the Mets next season. Because they made the qualifying offer, the Mets will receive a compensatory pick in next June’s amateur draft if Murphy does sign elsewhere.
Until this season no player in major league baseball had accepted the qualifying offer, but as of Friday afternoon both the Astros’ Colby Rasmus and the Orioles’ Matt Wieters did so, agreeing to stay with their teams.
Mets’ people have indicated some interest in negotiating with 34-year old free agent Ben Zobrist as a possible replacement for Murphy as well, but Zobrist, who had a strong post-season for the Royals, is expected to draw serious interest from several teams.