Cano, Granderson and Kuroda extended qualifying offers by Yankees

Robinson Cano smiles as he comes out of

Robinson Cano smiles as he comes out of the game for a pinch runner after hitting an RBI double in the 6th inning. (July 30, 2011) Photo Credit: David Pokress

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The Yankees made Robinson Cano a $14.1-million qualifying offer Monday they know there's no chance the second baseman takes.

The ones extended to Hiroki Kuroda and Curtis Granderson?

It's likely they will decline, as well, though there's at least a chance they will accept.

Teams had until 5 p.m. Monday to make the qualifying offers, all worth $14.1 million this season, to their free agents, which guarantee the clubs a compensatory draft pick should players declining them sign elsewhere.

Cano, Kuroda and Granderson were among the 13 players who received the offers and have until next Monday to make their decisions.

All free agents officially hit the market Tuesday, able to talk money and sign with teams.

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With Cano poised for a big strike on the free-agent market, he definitely will decline the qualifying offer. The circumstances are murkier with Kuroda, who has not yet decided to pitch in the majors next season or return to his native Japan, and Granderson, who heading into 2013 was set for a significant haul as a free agent this offseason before injuries derailed his season.

Granderson, who turns 33 March 16, was limited to 61 games because of a broken right forearm and broken left pinkie; he hit .229 with seven homers and 15 RBIs. The lefthanded-hitting outfielder hit a combined 84 homers in 2011 and 2012.

Granderson could choose to accept the qualifying offer, show in 2014 he hasn't lost that kind of power, then secure a big contract next offseason. Or he could decline it and gamble that a team in need of outfield help, such as his hometown White Sox perhaps, will come up with a big contract this offseason.

Should Granderson accept the qualifying offer, that would likely put an end to the Yankees' interest in free-agent outfielders Shin-Soo Choo, whom they like a lot, and Carlos Beltran. The Yankees already have outfielders Alfonso Soriano, Brett Gardner and Ichiro Suzuki under contract for next season.

Other free agents in whom the Yankees have an interest are catcher Brian McCann, infielders Stephen Drew and Jhonny Peralta and Japanese righthander Masahiro Tanaka, their top target as winter shopping begins.

Steinbrenner, Torre on Hall ballot. Joe Torre, Tony La Russa and Bobby Cox will join holdovers George Steinbrenner and Marvin Miller on the Hall of Fame expansion era committee ballot, which votes every three years, next month, it was announced yesterday. The committee will announce the results of its vote Dec. 9 at the winter meetings in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

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