Braves decline to make qualifying offers, including Markakis

ATLANTA (AP) — The Braves did not extend a qualifying offer to any of their free agents, including cleanup hitter Nick Markakis.

If Atlanta had made $17.9 million, one-year offer to Markakis by Friday’s deadline, it would have been in line to receive a draft pick if he signed elsewhere. But the team opted against such a move, not wanting to give the outfielder — who turns 35 this month — the option of taking such a lucrative deal.

While Markakis was a first-time All-Star who hit .297 with 14 homers and 93 RBIs, his production tailed off in the second half of the season.

The Braves also opted against qualifying offers to catcher Kurt Suzuki, starting pitcher Anibal Sanchez, starter Brandon McCarthy, infielder Ryan Flaherty and reliever Peter Moylan. McCarthy has said he plans to retire.