MLB News

When does MLB free agency start? Key dates, free agents for the White Sox, Cubs

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Welcome to the MLB offseason, it's already started!

Wait, what? Didn't the World Series end on Wednesday?

That's correct. But Nov. 2 marks the day players without a contract officially become free agents. Not so fast, they can't sign with new teams just yet. Let's go over some key dates for the MLB offseason.

Nov. 2: Players with 6+ years of service time without contracts are officially free agents. Eligible players must wait five days before signing with a new team. At this time, they're only allowed to speak with their previous team about a new contract.

Nov. 5: Gold Glove winners are announced on a live ESPN broadcast at 6:30 p.m. CT. Luis Robert Jr.? Ian Happ? Dansby Swanson? Stay tuned.

Nov. 6: This is a big day. It includes several deadlines and beginnings for the MLB offseason. Free agency officially opens up. This day marks the deadline for teams to tender eligible free agents to a qualifying offer. Contract option decisions are also due on this date.

For the White Sox, that means the futures of Tim Anderson (club), Liam Hendriks (club) and Mike Clevinger (mutual) must be decided. For the Cubs, that's Marcus Stroman (player), Kyle Hendricks (club), Yan Gomes (club), Brad Boxberger (mutual) and Cody Bellinger (mutual).

Nov. 7-9: These days mark the GM meetings in Scottsdale.

Nov. 14-16: Owners meetings happen in Arlington, Tex. through these dates.

Nov. 17: This is the deadline for teams to submit their offers for their pre-arbitration and arbitration-eligible contracts for the 2024 season. Contracts need not be signed on this day, just offers.

Dec. 3: Winter meetings in Nashville. Watch out. This is a crazy four-day period. A bunch of free-agent signings, trades and rumors will unfold.

Dec. 5: The draft lottery will be held live on MLB Network. As it stands, the White Sox have the fourth-best odds at landing the No. 1 pick in the draft (14.7%). The Cubs have a 0.4% chance.

Dec. 6: Rule 5 draft. Players selected from other teams during the Rule 5 draft must stay on their new team all season in 2024; otherwise, they are offered back to their native team.

Jan. 12: Arbitration-eligible players and teams will submit their salary figures for 2024. A majority of contracts will be agreed to leading up to this deadline to avoid arbitration.

Jan. 29- Feb. 16: Arbitration hearings will take place during this time.

Mid-February: Players will start reporting for Spring Training. Each team sets its reporting dates for pitchers and catchers, then position players.

And with that, here are the free agents for the White Sox, not including those with an option mentioned previously:

  • Yasmani Grandal
  • Elvis Andrus
  • Alex Colome
  • Bryan Shaw
  • Jose Urena
  • Billy Hamilton
  • Tyler Naquin

Here are the 2024 free agents for the Cubs, excluding those with options:

  • Jeimer Candelario
  • Michael Fulmer
  • Edwin Rios
  • Shane Greene

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