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Tuesday newsletter time: Big-name players linked to Rangers officially become free agents

(AP photo/John Minchillo)



The clock is ticking for teams and players to make decisions regarding free agency, and some have already made those decisions.

Jacob deGrom has elected to become a free agent by opting out of his contract. So has Carlos Rodon.

Fans hope the Rangers are interested in deGrom, a right-hander. The Rangers are interested in Rodon, a lefty-hander. The national media has linked the Rangers to just about every starting pitcher with a pulse.

Others who officially opted into free agency Monday were shortstops Carlos Correa and Xander Boegerts; righties Taijuan Walker and Robert Suarez; and former Rangers players Nelson Cruz and Jurickson Profar.

Others became free agents either by declining options (righties Chris Bassitt and Zach Eflin) or because their teams turned down club options (shortstop Jean Segura).

Officials from all 30 teams are in Las Vegas for the general managers meetings, but all that can happen before Thursday is for teams and player agents to talk about potential matches. Deals can’t be negotiated before then.

The agent for lefty Martin Perez will be in Las Vegas meeting with clubs to see if any are willing to beat the Rangers’ best offer. The Rangers might give Perez the qualifying offer, which at $19.6 million is attractive.

Perez, who wants to stay with the Rangers, might want to take it. Free agency with a qualifying offer attached can serve as an anchor to some free agents, but he would be a free agent again next year and can’t be offered a qualifying offer again.

Should Perez turn down the qualifying offer and sign elsewhere, the Rangers would receive draft-pick compensation.

Another chance for Palmeiro

The Contemporary Baseball Era Committee ballot is star-studded.

It’s also PED-studded, allegedly.

Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Dale Murphy, Don Mattingly, Curt Schilling, Albert Belle, Fred McGriff and Rafael Palmeiro.

Palmeiro, the former Rangers All-Star, is one of the three PED players, along with Bonds and Clemens. Palmeiro tested positive, while the other two did not. He is the only player in MLB history with 500 homers and 3,000 hits who is not in the Hall of Fame, but he’s got a shot through a 16-member committee that will be revealed later in the fall.

The selections will be revealed Dec. 4. McGriff might be the best bet. Murphy might be the fan favorite. Depending on what happens today at the ballot box, Schilling might actually be the most disliked.

Bonds, Clemens and Palmeiro have the best resumes — hands down. As I always say, baseball is complicit in the rise of steroids by not doing something sooner. I vote for Bonds and Clemens, who didn’t do anything explicitly banned by baseball. Palmeiro, though, failed a test.

It’s going to be tough for them.

Lottery news

No, not that one.

The odds for the inaugural MLB Draft lottery were unveiled Monday with the Rangers holding the seventh-best chance for the No. 1 overall pick.

They have a 5.5 percent chance, which is better than nothing. In a worst-case scenario, in which teams behind them all wedge their way into the top six, they could end up 13th.

The Rangers finished the season with the seventh-worst record (68-94). The lottery is part of the new collective bargaining agreement as players were hoping to eliminate team from tanking.

The lottery will be held Dec. 6 at the winter meetings.

Doggy video!

I would insert a hockey or soccer joke here if I had one. Enjoy.

Jeff Wilson, jeff@rangerstoday.com

Jeff Wilson

Sports reporter for two decades. Sports fan for life. Covers the Texas Rangers. Graduate of TCU. Colorado native. Author of Purple Passion: TCU Football Legends (https://t.co/2fmXLyympx). Follow me on Twitter at @JeffWilsonTXR

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