The deadline for extending qualifying offers to free agents has officially come and gone as of 2:00 pm PT today. The Padres have reportedly extended QOs to both Ian Kennedy and Justin Upton.
Extending a QO to Upton was never really a question, but Kennedy's status was a little less solid. If the players accept their offers, they will play for San Diego in 2016 for $15.8 million. If either of them decline the offer, the Padres will receive a comp pick in the 2016 MLB Draft.
Retaining Kennedy in 2016 would likely be a good deal for the Padres. The right-hander is coming off his third straight season of 30 or more starts. He did experience a setback early in his season when he went down with a hamstring injury, from which he had trouble returning. But he was much more reliable in the latter half of the season.
Kennedy made $9.85 million in 2015 and would be a decent option for the Padres if he accepts their QO, though there is a decent chance he'll turn it down and try his luck as a free agent, in which case the Padres would still benefit with the extra Draft pick next season.
As for Upton, there's hardly a chance he will accept the offer. The outfielder would likely command a large free-agent deal this Winter. SB Nation's Grant Brisbee ranks Upton no. 7 in his Free Agent Power Rankings for this offseason and, like pretty much everyone in media, doesn't even entertain a possibility of him accepting the $15.8 million offer.
Good player. Very good player, even. Not a building block of a franchise, though. He'll get paid like one because that's how free agency works, so hopefully he's going to a team that can surround him with talent instead of one that expects him to be the talent.
As much as we'd like to see him lead the Padres to a World Series in 2016, it's looking pretty unlikely.
The deadline to accept or decline qualifying offers is November 13th, so stay tuned for updates over the next week.