Ubaldo Jimenez free agency: Indians likely to offer pitcher a qualifying offer

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The Indians would likely love to have Jimenez back on a one-year deal if he were to accept the offer.

The Cleveland Indians are "almost certainly" going to offer starting pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez a qualifying offer before he enters free agency, says Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.

His first year-and-a-half in Cleveland after being acquired via trade with the Rockies mid-2011, Jimenez posted a 5.32 ERA over 42 starts. His 2013 season started off similarly, with a 4.63 ERA through June. Over the last three months of the year he bounced back with a 2.18 ERA and 626 opponents OPS over 16 starts.

A one-year qualifying offer will be valued at $14.1 million in 2014. If Jimenez turns down the offer, he will become a free agent. However, any team that signs him will have to give up a draft pick.

There are concerns that the market may make Jimenez too expensive for Cleveland if he makes it to free agency. Tim Lincecum's two-year deal with the Giants has elevated fears that the price for pitchers is drastically rising.

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