Russell Martin rejects qualifying offer from Pirates

Catcher Russell Martin has officially rejected a $15.3-million qualifying offer from the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Many teams in need of a catcher will be in hot pursuit because he free agent market for that position is weak beyond Martin, as A.J. Pierzynski and David Ross are the best of the remainder.

Early today, Jeff Blair of Rogers Sportsnet reported that teams pursuing Martin were informed that he is seeking a five-year deal worth up to $80 million. The Chicago Cubs have already met with Martin, while the Toronto Blue Jays, Los Angeles Dodgers and Pirates Pirates are also expected to discuss a deal with the catcher.

The 31-year-old is coming off a season where he slashed .290/.402/.430 with 11 home runs and 67 RBI’s over 111 games and 379 at-bats. He has showed improvement over the years. It does not seem as if the catcher will ever struggled until his late 30’s. He will most likely be a top catcher in the 2015 season.

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