Daily Distractions: Let the free agency period begin.

Red Sox fans

Boston Red Sox fans celebrate the start of free agency Wednesday night. (Associated Press photo)

The World Series is over, making ringbearers of the Red Sox and free agents of dozens of players around baseball.

The Dodgers will have at least 10: Ricky Nolasco, Michael Young, Juan Uribe, Carlos Marmol, Jerry Hairston, Edinson Volquez, Skip Schumaker, Nick Punto, J.P. Howell and Brian Wilson. Per MLB rules, the Dodgers have exclusive negotiating rights with each player up until midnight Eastern Time Monday, after which all are free to sign with any club.

Sometime within the next five days, general manager Ned Colletti and staff must ultimately decide whether or not to extend these players a qualifying offer, a guaranteed contract for 2014 equal to the average salary of the highest-paid 125 players. This year, that’s $14.1 million.

The potential risk every team faces in extending a qualifying offer is that the player will accept the offer and receive more money than he would by testing the open market. The potential reward is twofold: 1, you might re-sign the player at a discount compared to his open-market value; 2, if the player doesn’t accept the qualifying offer and signs elsewhere, your team receives a first-round draft pick in 2014 from the team that does sign the player.

Of the Dodgers’ 10 free agents, Nolasco is the only viable candidate to receive a qualifying offer. He made $11.5 million last year. What’s another $2.6 million? That’s the, um, $2.6 million question that’s been floating around the front offices at Chavez Ravine this month. The answer should be an easy one: Since Nolasco didn’t begin the year with the Dodgers, they won’t receive any draft-pick compensation if he signs elsewhere.

More on him, and the other free agents, later today.

We should also note here that Chris Capuano and Mark Ellis have options for 2014 in their contracts. Capuano’s is a mutual option for $8 million with a $1 million buyout; Ellis’ is a $5.75 million club option with a $1 million buyout. If the team declines the option on both players, that’s a dirty dozen Dodgers destined to hit the free-agent market.

Some bullet points for an Allantide morning:

• Boston hadn’t stopped partying by the time the first odds for the 2014 World Series came to our attention. From R.J. Bell of Pregame.com:



Detroit Tigers


Washington Nationals


St Louis Cardinals


Boston Red Sox


Cincinnati Reds




Oakland Athletics


New York Yankees


Texas Rangers


Atlanta Braves


San Francisco Giants


Pittsburgh Pirates


Baltimore Orioles


Cleveland Indians


Tampa Bay Rays


Kansas City Royals


Chicago White Sox


Philadelphia Phillies


Arizona Diamondbacks


Toronto Blue Jays


Chicago Cubs


Seattle Mariners


Colorado Rockies


San Diego Padres


Milwaukee Brewers


New York Mets


Miami Marlins


Minnesota Twins


Houston Astros


• From Bovada.lv:

Dodgers                                                7/1
Detroit Tigers                                        9/1
Boston Red Sox                                   10/1
St. Louis Cardinals                                10/1
Washington Nationals                            10/1
Los Angeles Angels                              14/1
Atlanta Braves                                       16/1
Cincinnati Reds                                     16/1
New York Yankees                                16/1
Oakland Athletics                                  16/1
Tampa Bay Rays                                   16/1
Texas Rangers                                      16/1
San Francisco Giants                            18/1
Cleveland Indians                                  20/1
Baltimore Orioles                                   25/1
Pittsburgh Pirates                                  25/1
Toronto Blue Jays                                 25/1
Kansas City Royals                               33/1
Philadelphia Phillies                               33/1
Arizona Diamondbacks                          40/1
Chicago White Sox                                50/1
Milwaukee Brewers                                50/1
Seattle Mariners                                    50/1
Chicago Cubs                                       66/1
Colorado Rockies                                 66/1
San Diego Padres                                 66/1
Minnesota Twins                                    75/1
New York Mets                                      75/1
Miami Marlins                                       200/1
Houston Astros                                     250/1

• Happy birthday to Javy Guerra (28), and possible future Dodgers analyst Fred McGriff (50).

• An interesting stat:

• If you like the idea of Jacoby Ellsbury playing center field for the Dodgers, get ready to complain that he hits lefties no better than Andre Ethier.

• The Dodgers re-used the Brooklyn caps that were sold to fans when they moved to Los Angeles.

• Dr. Dog has a new album out:

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