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Friday, January 06, 2023

Yankees eye Pirates’ Bryan Reynolds amid ‘unrealistic asks’

One interested team exec summed up the Pirates requests in two words: “unrealistic asks.” Another team’s exec says there’s nothing happening now but they hold hope for spring.

It’s not surprising the ask is high since the Pirates don’t seem especially interested in trading him as they hope to contend within the three years he has left. Plus, it would be difficult publicly. Perhaps, too, the Pirates don’t want to accede to trade demands, which they may fear will trigger a trend.

While sources say the Pirates offered over $75 million for six years with no team options, Reynolds’ camp originally mentioned the $168 million, eight-year deal Matt Olson received as a comp (though their request was lower than that). The Braves did sign Sean Murphy for $73 million over six years (plus a team option), and Murphy is in the same class as Olson. (The Reynolds camp would counter that that deal is low.)

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 06, 2023 at 12:08 PM | 8 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: bryan reynolds, pirates

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   1. sanny manguillen Posted: January 06, 2023 at 12:37 PM (#6112159)
Banner across that article says Nate Colbert has died at 76. RIP.

The Pirates have spent $25 million or so this offseason, and I can't help but think it's because they're planning to save $100 million or so that they won't have to pay Reynolds.
   2. Walt Davis Posted: January 06, 2023 at 01:09 PM (#6112167)
EDIT: RIP Nate Colbert. He was a bit of a fave when I was just starting out and he had those big years. I didn't see any of it but his baseball cards looked the part.

Reynolds is a MUCH better hitter than I realized. For no good reason, I had him in my head as one of those good all-around players who's +5 on offense, +5 on defense in CF, adds a bit of baserunning and it all adds up to like 3.5 WAR. He's actually a 127 OPS+ bat apparently miscast as a CF (DRS is not a fan). So maybe he should be in LF and a 127 in LF isn't mind-boggling or anything but it's in a class with Schwarber, Teoscar and Arozarena.

Pirates have 3 years of control left -- intentionally or not, they Bryanted him and the MLBPA didn't really do anything in the CBA to help these guys that I'm aware of.** So it's understandable he's annoyed. He's under contract for this year already as part of a 2/$13.5 buyout of his first 2 arb years. I'll WAG that puts him in line for about $27-30 M over his last 2 arb years. If the 6/$75 offer started next year, that's clearly a non-starter. If it started this year, it might be in the ballpark. Of course the main difference between him and Murphy is that Murphy is a C with limited playing time and therefore limited WAR and that deal covers 3 regular arb years and 3 FA years. The Olson deal covers two arb years (at a quite high price) then 6 pretty cheap FA years -- I'd guess a Reynolds equivalent of that might be about 8/$130. Looks like Reynolds is about half a WAR worse than Olson.

** They did some small things to help new Bryants and one sizable thing to help good pre-arb players but if you got Bryanted back in 2019 I don't think they did anything to help you.
   3. sanny manguillen Posted: January 06, 2023 at 03:43 PM (#6112199)
intentionally or not, they Bryanted him

I don't think so. Marte was injured in a collision in April, and Reynolds came up. When Marte got back, Reynolds was hitting .423 and they were both in the lineup.
   4. Walt Davis Posted: January 06, 2023 at 07:07 PM (#6112245)
Like I said, "intentionally or not." Regardless of how it happened, the guy has 3 years and 163 days service time.

Now that I suspect that if Marte had gotten hurt 10 days earlier then the Pirates would have demoted Reynolds saying "he'll be back as soon as we can clear roster space" then brought him back once he was below the magic number does say something about hos I think the Pirates operate. :-)
   5. Walt Davis Posted: January 06, 2023 at 07:18 PM (#6112249)
And just cuz I was curious ... the Pirates started with Polanco on the IL and an OF of Corey Dickerson in LF, Marte in CF and Melky in RF. But Dickerson got hurt after 3 games. The Pirates gave PT to JB Shuck, Jason Martin and Pablo Reyes rather than call up Reynolds. Which might have also been perfectly understandable -- what do I know about the Pirates' farm system ca 2019? -- but it would have been reasonable to give Reynolds a full year's service time too.

I really am not trying to pick on them -- e.g. it's not like they stuck Reynolds in the lineup every day after promotion. I think it's completely plausible that the Pirates played no service time games with Reynolds, that this is just how it worked out. Regardless, I completely understand a guy might not be happy being under team control for 3 more years just because of 9 days.
   6. DCA Posted: January 06, 2023 at 10:49 PM (#6112276)
Reynolds wasn't a great prospect (no top 100) and 2019 was his AAA debut. He crushed it (1181 OPS) in only 13 games before being called up. I don't think there was any plan, before the season, for him to have a significant role on the big league squad. If anything, he forced his way into an early call-up with a strong 2 weeks of AAA.
   7. Tony S Posted: January 07, 2023 at 08:41 AM (#6112291)
they hope to contend within the three years he has left

There are 12 teams in the playoffs now, and this is the apex of the Pirates' organizational vision.

I don't blame Reynolds for wanting to bail.
   8. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 08, 2023 at 11:09 AM (#6112417)
they hope to contend within the three years he has left

That quote is probably missing the next clause:

but not at the cost of raising the payroll over $70M.

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