Pirates Prospects Daily: The Bryan Reynolds Ordeal Was Likely Inevitable

It’s been quite the offseason for the Pittsburgh Pirates. They’ve added some players through free agency and trade, while also recently clearing up some roster space by putting Miguel Yajure and Ali Sanchez through waivers (both claimed).

Turns out that is probably barely the tip of the iceberg. Reports surfaced on Saturday afternoon that Bryan Reynolds asked to be traded.

What a whirlwind of emotions the course of the day went. Initially, there were questions whether this was some sort of negotiating tactic. It later came out that the Pirates had some sort of deal on the table that would have been the largest they have given out in franchise history.

The exact figures were unknown, but there was some sort of negotiation taking place.

There are two immediate thoughts about all of this and how it unfolded, one from each side of the negotiating table.

For the Pirates, even if it was still on the lower side of things, they were actively trying to lock up a second member of this team, and not even a year after giving Ke’Bryan Hayes a $70 million contract, they were ready to go beyond that.

This happening after the trade and signing of Ji-Man Choi and Carlos Santana, as well as the ‘interest’ in Kyle Gibson (he signed with the Baltimore Orioles), it seems like there’s starting to be a shift in the focus from the previous years.

It’s still early, but there seems to be the feeling of a shift into a different phase for this front office.

When it comes to Reynolds, I’ve long been under the feeling that there was almost no reason for him not to test the free agent market. He’ll be 30-years-old when he becomes a free agent, and it could be his one big opportunity to really cash in. Why not test the open market where you can maximize on his value?

You also can’t really blame him for wanting to get out of this situation, where the team isn’t likely to be in contention again and preferring to head to a team further along when it comes to competing.

In an ideal scenario, the Pirates are able to make a last ditch effort to sign Reynolds and they get something done to keep him in Pittsburgh. While 2023 may not be the year, they aren’t far off from having a legitimate chance to compete and would be doing so while Reynolds is still in his prime years.

Sometimes things just don’t work out that way, and we get what unfolded on Saturday. With the Winter Meetings kicking off on Sunday, we can expect a lot of talk about Reynold’s trade request, and even if a trade doesn’t happen (there doesn’t seem to be a rush to make this happen), Ben Cherington could certainly leave with the framework set up for a potential swap.

Highlight of the Day

Pirates Prospects Daily

By Tim Williams

The big news on Saturday was that Bryan Reynolds has requested a trade.

Before diving into this, I want to point out a reality of the “highest paid contract” portion that is meant to show intent from the Pirates. This is one of those cases where the lack of historical spending by the Pirates allows them to say “We offered to make Bryan Reynolds our highest paid player”, and it sound nice on the surface. In all actuality, the mere act of signing Reynolds to an extension based on his value would make him the highest paid player. This wouldn’t be an act of the Pirates going out of their way, but a sad note that the market rate for a Reynolds extension is more than the Pirates have ever paid a player.

Reynolds has a guaranteed $6.75 million in 2023. I’m not sure if an extension talk would have replaced that figure and year. If it did, then the $70 million record now just needs an additional $63.25 million beyond the upcoming season for that record. Let’s give the benefit of the doubt that an extension would start after the 2023 season, like a true extension would.

The Pirates have Reynolds under team control through the 2025 season, giving them two years of arbitration. He should at least get $20 million in those years, and maybe a lot more if he has a season closer to 2021.

From there, as Anthony mentioned above, he becomes a free agent at age 30. Brandon Nimmo is in that position right now, projected to receive five years and $100 million. If we use that as a guide, Reynolds could make $120 million from 2024-2030, simply by going to arbitration two more times and becoming a free agent. He would have to maintain his production to get to this point, but that’s a disclaimer that would exist for a Pirates extension.

My guess is that a $70 million offer would have covered multiple free agent years — likely three. This would make Reynolds a free agent at the age of 33. If he’s performing well at this point, he could still get another contract to make up for not signing a big deal at age 30. If he’s not performing, he could probably still get a multi-year deal.

It’s not difficult to imagine Reynolds potentially leaving a lot of money on the table, long-term, by signing an extension with the Pirates. That’s part of the incentive for the Pirates to try right now. Reynolds only has to look at his predecessor as an example.

Andrew McCutchen signed a six year, $51.5 million extension back in 2012. The deal bought out three years of free agency. McCutchen would have otherwise become a free agent after the 2015 season at the age of 28. Instead, he became a free agent after the 2018 season, and after his performance took a downturn, which resulted in a three year, $50 million deal.

You don’t have to imagine McCutchen making more than the roughly $90 million over six years if he decides to enter free agency at age 28. Then again, McCutchen himself has said he’s not sure whether he’d have the numbers from 2012-2015, including his MVP season, without the guarantee of the contract up front.

Even though he definitely left money on the table, McCutchen has made over $100 million. Yet, chalking it up like that is as disingenuous as saying the Pirates offered to make Bryan Reynolds the highest paid player. McCutchen did make a lot of money, but comparatively, he should have made a lot more.

I say all of this to say that it really comes down to an individual choice. Bryan Reynolds is guaranteed money in 2023. He’s got a good path to high earnings in 2024-2025. He can then enter free agency at age 30, in line to receive a lot more than what he’d get at age 33.

This all assumes good performance for the next three years, and good health. It wouldn’t take much for Reynolds to see his value drop below that $70 million range discussed in an extension.

And yet, I look at Nimmo again. The biggest knock I have against Reynolds is his inconsistency. I personally wouldn’t extend him beyond age 30. Yet, Nimmo is also inconsistent, but is about to cash in because he had a big season in a free agent year.

Reynolds could do the same thing Nimmo did and put up a 1.7 WAR in each of the next two years — which would be a massive disappointment to Pirates fans — only to rebound in 2025 with a 5 WAR season for his big payday. He just needs to stay healthy enough to perform in that one season in order to make more than he’d get in an extension.

This has all been about money and value. The more important thing is whether Reynolds wants to play in Pittsburgh. There have been conflicting reports on that front, and it seems like Reynolds may have had a recent change of heart.

I’m sure this will unfold a lot more in the upcoming week as the MLB Winter Meetings take place. I can see reasons for both sides to do the deal, and I can see reasons for neither side to do the deal.

Ultimately, if the Pirates want to improve their clubhouse atmosphere, they need to handle the situation with Reynolds one way or the other.

**The other news on Saturday was that the Pirates are favorites to sign Cuban outfielder Cristian Jauregui next month.

**John Dreker wrote about Rodolfo Castro’s winter struggles in this week’s Pirates Winter Report. Castro did homer on Friday, so hopefully his issues are just offseason rust.

**Missed yesterday? Anthony recapped the moves the Pirates made to clear 40-man roster space ahead of the Rule 5 draft.

Song of the Day

Pirates Prospects Weekly

John Dreker has the latest winter report, spotlighting Rodolfo Castro, with mentions on 32 players in winter ball this offseason.

Pirates Winter Report: It’s Been a Rough Winter So Far for Rodolfo Castro

Anthony began writing over 10 years ago, starting a personal blog to cover the 2011 MLB draft, where the Pirates selected first overall. After bouncing around many websites covering hockey, he refocused his attention to baseball, his first love when it comes to sports. He eventually found himself here at Pirates Prospects in late 2021, where he covers the team’s four full season minor league affiliates.

Tim started Pirates Prospects in 2009 from his home in Virginia, which was 40 minutes from where Pedro Alvarez made his pro debut in Lynchburg. That year, the Lynchburg Hillcats won the Carolina League championship, and Pirates Prospects was born from Tim's reporting along the way. The site has grown over the years to include many more writers, and Tim has gone on to become a credentialed MLB reporter, producing Pirates Prospects each year, and will publish his 11th Prospect Guide this offseason. He has also served as the Pittsburgh Pirates correspondent for Baseball America since 2019. Behind the scenes, Tim is an avid music lover, and most of the money he gets paid to run this site goes to vinyl records.

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john.benedict

Great song TIm, are they covering SG or did SG cover them

forkball

I’m of the mindset that Reynolds is a good player but not a cornerstone of the future. Get a true center fielder who has something to prove and a high end prospect. This event does not change my optimism for ’23.

EightMenOut

What I can’t figure out is why go public with it? Either side. This just makes it harder to trade Reynolds, because unless a team is committed to giving him a good extension before the start of the 2023 season, then he is in the same position with that team as he is with the Pirates. Part of his value in a trade is you get those 3 years of arbitration, without that, you are less likely to trade for him, or you don’t want to give up as much.

ArkyWags

I’d guess it’s a ploy to put pressure on them to trade him. He doesn’t care if his value goes down to them, he wants out.

EightMenOut

If that is true, it is a bad ploy, because the Pirates are less likely to trade him, now that his value has gone down. If the Reynolds camp intentioally leaked this info, then now you have someone who is known to go public with a trade demand if they are not happy about extension talks. I would think there are teams that don’t want to sign up for that while still trading away a lot of value. Lots of teams do poorly for a string of years in a row, but I can’t recall a player with 3 years of control saying they want traded. He will get traded soon enough if the Pirates have another year playing way below .500. He is a starter in the big leagues, that is its own reward. The smart thing is to pressure management behind the scenes. Be interesting to know how this information became public.

ArkyWags

The deal must have been absolute garbage because usually if extension talks break down, a guy doesn’t ask out immediately. I don’t blame him for asking out if he’s frustrated, he only has a finite amount of time to win and make money. And since this management team makes questionable calls all the time, it’s likely they take 5 nickels for a quarter.

EightMenOut

Even if the offer was bad, and you want to make a public comment, then you just say “I have stopped talking to management about an extension because the offers have been way too low, and plan on playing out my three years without an extension”. Then you can still look good to someone wanting to trade for you. But to say you want to be traded, just lowers your trade value, and makes it less likely that you are traded. Kris Byrant basically said he wasn’t interested in being extended by the Cubs, and that’s fine, but that is different than saying you want to be traded. In the end, if this came from Reynolds camp, I think they gave him some bad advice. But, who knows, tomorrow we learn something else, or we pull off a trade for a 3-4 WAR starting pitcher, and all is mostly ok.

Anthony

This tells me it’s probably a “years” issue bc NO team is going to pay him market value on an extension without offsetting the deal for term risk.

1979andCounting

Happy that Reynolds, or most likely his agent, went public. It brings focus back on Nutting. Remember the Union lawsuit……one of the teams was the Pirates, so this is very good PR for us fans. I believe that BC really wants to build a contending team……so we shall see how much influence he has on BN. We don’t know the exact negotiations here, and it is GENERALLY unacceptable for a fairly high profile A/S player to demand a trade when he’s only in year 4. But as a fan who has watched the charade under Nutting for 15 years, BRey did us all a favor!

On the other side of the coin, the Rays just extended their largest player contract in team history……..all $40 mil to Zach Eflin! So the Pirates aren’t the only cheap small market team. But there just needs to be competence all the way thru the organization to get a competitive product on the field.

I don’t think BC should trade Reynolds, and I think he should be pissed at him or moreso his agent. But going public is a very good thing to draw some accountability to this F.O. for the next several years. This could still have a very good outcome, BRey could put up some filthy good numbers the next few years as a Pirate.

TNBucs

That might have been the largest FA deal the Rays have made but they extended Longoria back in 2012 to a deal that committed them to $136MM over ten years.

In any case, the Rays deal with Eflin is surprising, not only because of its amount but also that it was well above what MLBTR and Fangraphs were projecting (though McDaniel at ESPN nailed it). That says to me that the Rays didn’t need to feel like they were getting a good deal to get the player they wanted.

jaygray007

put a good team around reynolds asap and make him happier. make this a good 3 years of control for everyone involved. it’s okay to say bye and then buy other things.

what doesnt make sense is keeping reynolds and trotting out terrible teams.

therefore, make the team good.

Last edited 2 months ago by jaygray007
jaygray007

To the extent that Reynolds’ complaint is “this team probably isn’t gonna be good, so i should be traded. it makes sense for everyone involved. im frustrated and i am a competitive person”, i support him.

To the extent that Reynolds’ complaint is “i am under team control thru 2025 but we couldnt agree on what my 2026 thru 2030 salary should be, so trade me now” i do not support him. it’s a collectively bargained system of team control. It’s a little silly to be mad about an extension that isnt gonna kick in until year of our lord two thousand and twenty six.

phieralph

I feel like the fan equivalent of Bryan Reynolds right now. And I think his request is a perfect example of a fan of thrity years watching the Buccos flail for… my lord, the past thirty years? I’ve drank the kool aid multiple times. I’ve tried to believe. But this waiver claim circus, these roster decisions and general framework for the team under Cherington is peak lack of faith for me.

Someone compared the signing of Carlos Santana to Matt Morris and though it might be somewhat dramatic… I see Santana as an attempt of soma for the people. In the same sense, that the trade for Chris Archer was. Look! We’re trying! Aimless. Objectiveless. Floundering.

I feel like Bryan Reynolds. Can you trade me somewhere else?

joesolo6181

Who is the better player, Hayes or Reynolds? If the pirates gave the interior player Hayes $70 million then surely Reynolds deserves much more. Money is becoming worthless. Remember when a billion was a lot? Now that seems like chump change to our politicians. So players are asking for the moon and getting it. And who pays for it? Us fools with higher cable fees, ticket prices and. Merchandise. When will it end?

bradlej31

Hayes was nicked up this year, hit worse than he’s capable of and had 4.1 bWAR and 3.0 fWAR. Reynolds was at 2.9 for both fWAR and bWAR for reference.

RaisetheJollyRancherGirl

Psssh Hayes is always nicked up. Hayes nicks himself up walking to the refrigerator to get a Fanta. Hayes can’t and won’t hit unless he goes to Driveline this offseason and completely reworks his swing and he has no incentive to do that as a $70M man. bWAR overrates defense so ofc Hayes looks good there.

Wilbur Miller

Since today is a good day for venting . . . I used to like Mackey, but his ceaseless efforts to defend every last thing the Pirates do are beyond tiresome. He thought the Santana signing was one of the most brilliant moves in MLB history, which I guess is easier if you persistently ignore Santana’s age and his performance the last three years. Sorry, but no objective observer could possibly get beyond “meh” for that signing. And to add some context, Mackey also loved the Knapp, VanMeter and Marisnick signings. If they brought back Rod Barajas to be the starting catcher, Mackey would defend it.

So now he’s claiming, without any evidence or logic, that they made Reynolds a good offer. This is the worst-run team in pro sports over the last 30 years. The history is such that the odds are at least 95% that the reason no deal was reached is that the Pirates wouldn’t pay Reynolds what he’s worth, or wouldn’t extend it more than a year or two beyond his FA eligibility (which he’d be an idiot to accept), or most likely both. And repeatedly falling back on the largest-in-team-history meme, and comparing him to Hayes, who was two years away from arbitration, is pathetic. They probably didn’t spit on his agent, either. Should they be applauded for that?

Last edited 2 months ago by Wilbur Miller
jaygray007

He’s one of the best beat reporters around, but i do think he does simply fall for their rhetoric. He very quickly gets convinced that every new hire they make in the FO is a “smart” guy who “knows what he’s doing”

like yeah it’s nice to hear John Baker say “we want to do good things and to avoid bad things” but it’s meaningless untill there are results

Last edited 2 months ago by jaygray007
b mcferren

the thing that gets me about all this drama is that none of this is a surprise

of course we have no money

of course we low ball everyone

of course we have to win every deal we make

of course risk is not an option

of course we compete with no one in a bidding war

of course our role in the league is to introduce players to the league and bounce back veterans on token contracts

none of this is new news

most if not all of us who follow this team have long ago come to terms with these set in stone facts

how is a contract extension related at all to the plan of identification, acquisition, development, deployment?

a contract extension is the opposite

Reynolds needs traded

He did us all a favor to get back onto our plan

Last edited 2 months ago by b mcferren
Wilbur Miller

of course we have to win every deal we make
of course risk is not an option

These two things are mutually exclusive.

hoptown

Reynolds is projected to get $6.75M i arb this year. Let’s assume that projects to $10M and $15M the next two years. Offer him $8M, $12M, $16M, w/ a team option for $16M. He gets guaranteed money higher than what he projects plus protection from injury. The Pirates get an extra option year at an affordable rate if he performs. He delays FA 1 year. The Pirates have him under contract for this window theyre trying to open.

Scam likely

But if trade to a team with real lineup, he puts up better numbers and makes more in arb. and as a free agent.

jaygray007

this isn’t quite true. that 6.75 is not a arbitration prediction. that’s his guaranteed salary.

he signed a 2 yr contract before last season.

That said, i’m sure your 10 and 15 prediction for ’24 and ’25 arent too far off.

hoptown

Good catch. Forgot about that.

b mcferren

Go get cutch and roll with kids in the outfield: Canaan, Bae, Suwinski, Mitchell, Swaggerty is the right plan

b mcferren

Thursty Rangers are ready to send us Leiter and Kumar

b mcferren

Go fetch Eury and Stallings for Reynolds

steve_zielinski

Better Watson and Perez for Reyonlds and Bednar. The Pirates and their fans need to treat this trade as an opportunity and to act accordingly. This proposal results in a nearly equal transfer of baseball value. If the Marlins do not wat to trade Perez, then move to the next suitor. Repeat when necessary

b mcferren

I’d rather take a chance on their broken pitchers Meyer and Sixto than add another shortstop prospect

steve_zielinski

I was considering mo ing Watson to CF

RaisetheJollyRancherGirl

Have you seen Watson’s numbers in A ball?

.231.296.395 with a 36% k rate. No thank you.

steve_zielinski

I did. That’s why I tacked him on the proposed deal. He’s a toolshed. But he failed to perform. The key peice from the Marlins is Perez. The Pirates lack that Ace pitcher who can pitch shououts during playoff runs. The farm system shows only mid-rotation pitchers, at best.

RaisetheJollyRancherGirl

Think I’d rather leave him out and keep Bednar for a separate trade.

SouthernBuc

Another proposal for a round table and this is for when things are slow: What should the business model of the Pittsburgh Pirates be under todays labor deal? This would be a future look with no looking back. I admit I tire of every thread becoming a history lesson in 30 years of pain and also of Nutting complaints (I was worn out over the Newman debates here and elsewhere). Having said that, I know those are very often key contributing factors.

So this would be a blank sheet with no history lessons and with IMO reasonable assumptions. My 2 examples – 1) the owner doesn’t deficit spend (maybe one year) but the owner also makes their primary money elsewhere so while they may not deficit spend, they don’t rake in the money even if the team stinks over a long period 2) no financial saviors where an owner just pours all their money into the team (Mark Cuban always comes up).

Last edited 2 months ago by SouthernBuc
leefieux

Time to sit back and ‘enjoy’ the ride that is Bucco Baseball. I hope we keep him, but it is out of my control.

But, there IS that skeptical Pirate fan view that WHATEVER we choose to do will turn out badly for us. I hate that all of these years of losing has put that attitude in a lot of us.

Last edited 2 months ago by leefieux
docdon385

There’s a psychological term for what you label the skeptical Pirate fan’s attitude. It’s called “learned helplessness” and unfortunately is a very real phenomenon. I won’t attempt to define it but, if you don’t know what it is, you can look it up with a couple of clicks.

Overcoming it involves finding ways to gain control and change how someone thinks, but as we know all too well the reality is that fans actually have no control so it comes down to accepting the situation and trying to “enjoy the ride” that is the game of baseball with few or very limited expectations for success or giving up and moving on to a different team or to something else entirely. Most of the people on this sight, myself included, are not willing or able to do the latter so it falls to all of us to keep on keeping on and trying to enjoy the craziness that has become Pirate baseball.

BTW a team doesn’t get better by trading away it’s best player and Nutting doesn’t put the money he doesn’t spend on someone like Reynolds into other high level free agents or even back into the team in general. If he did the payroll would already be pretty high with what he didn’t spend on the likes of Cole etc.

steve_zielinski

Unfortunately, Pirates fans are helpless vis a vis the Pirates. Being helpless is depressing. Nutting and McClatchy have and have control over the money. At best, the team can afford many low-ball contracts. It only sees disincentives with players like Cutch, Marte, Cole, etc. who would break the team’s budget if paid what they are worth. The Pirates are risk adverse.

Scam likely

That’s why I now follow penn. St wrestling ,9 national championships in 14 years.”if you don’t like a party leave”

cpc

At age 72, my wife and are pondering a move to the pacific NW. Assuming the Mariners are on an upswing, it might be fun to follow a winning team.

But I know I’ll never be able to quit the Bucs. Too much history, too many fond memories even if there have been only 6 joyous years post 1979.

SouthernBuc

I would like to repost what AdministrativeSky236 posted on the prior Reynolds thread. A good round table from our writers would be to propose what would look like a good trade (for both sides) of a Reynolds trade. I’ll add, 1) assume it happens this off-season 2) strictly baseball on field discussion (Nutting stinks and is a factor in this happening but this roundtable should be talent / future positioning of the Pirates on the field team centric) 3) BTV is a good sanity check – doesn’t have to work perfectly but it is a decent guide. Thoughts from our writers?

adicesa14

I think you’re trying to say every time the Pirates develop a ‘star player,’ they must part with him one way or another, and start over. That’s exactly what’s been happening, year after year.

RaisetheJollyRancherGirl

They can only afford to keep star players if they happen to develop more than one and have a decent roster around them made up of other 0-6 players. Unfortunately, Hayes is definitionally not a star and just a good role player, Cruz still has questions to answer and no one in the starting rotation is truly proven yet, either. I wish Reynolds would have waited on this to just before the trade deadline because there’s a very real possibility Cruz or Contrares/Ortiz/Oviedo/Keller could step up along with Endy and less so Nick Gonzales.

SouthernBuc

I am thinking this response is for my other post which asks for what a business model should look like in Pittsburgh. I hope the model (keep in mind I said forget what is happening, it is a what should be possible question) does not say trade all star players(current model). But it might be that a star player (see Judge) who wants huge money into their 39-40 year old season might not fit the model.

If the responses was for my suggest a trade round table, I truly meant this as a simple question. If Reynolds would be traded now (or maybe post Judge/Nimmo signings), what might our writers see as a good return.

PirateRican21

Ideas

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AdministrativeSky236

Giants and dodgers offers are the best there imo

RaisetheJollyRancherGirl

If the Giants don’t get Judge, I’m sure they’d love to go hard after Reynolds.

PirateRican21

My thinking as well, no Judge, they might go Correa, Reynolds

SouthernBuc

Thank you. I’ve been scouring BTV pretty regularly as there has been a flood of ideas. You chose some of the more compelling. I am hoping the Blue Jays fans soon understand that a catcher is likely not a good headliner for a trade! Dodgers intrigue me as they have many options likely starting in AAA or even MLB who are high ranking prospects with Miller being a nice headliner. I still want to see 2023 play out with Reynolds, but not sure that will happen.

Scam likely

When trading Reynolds they should take what they think is the best offer regardless of age of prospects and the need of the position, what they need is impact talent coming back.

Wilbur Miller

I don’t see a whole lot that’s puzzling here. Reynolds has said he wants to stay and, sure enough, he’s twice tried to work out an extension. And far from “negotiating in the media,” it’s all been done very quietly. He seems like a very low key guy who just wants to settle in.
But the Nuttin Pirates never, ever pay market value, and the negotiations ended. Reynolds would be an idiot not to conclude that he’s inevitably going to be traded, just like every other good player they’ve had, probably within the next year. So it makes perfect sense for him to want to get it over with and see whether he can settle in somewhere else, now that he knows he has no long term future in the land of Nuttin.

The Gunner

Well said

timbre21

What is best for pirates? Best trade offer it appears, sooner the better so we can understand the “window”

PirateRican21

I hope they keep him, give up on the idea of extending him and instead use that money to improve the team. A Quintana reunion would be nice, adding a RH bat in the outfield would be great (Haniger ).and a catcher on a one year deal.

timbre21

Yes, Quintana, Haniger and another (reliever) or 2 should put us close to competing

skliesen

Sounds good to me. Although I prefer Manaea (younger). Add in the talent they’d acquire from trading him, and it adds up to more wins.

bianco599

I’m down with signing Manaea and Q coming back. Quintana probably has time left on his rental lease. Unless he paid the balance off when traded.

TNBucs

What may be in everyone’s best interest is something like a three-year extension beyond his current contract for something like $48MM (assuming about ~23MM in ’24 and ’25 given typical raises through arbitration and buying out a FA year for $25MM). It lowers the risk for the Pirates, locks Reynolds into the highest AAV even given out by the Pirates while also allowing him to be a FA at 31, and gives us what should be a 3-year window (’24-’26) of contending with him in the OF. Everybody wins.

emjayinTN

That’s way too easy and sensible for the Pirates to wrap their arms around.

The way it is now, Ben gets to listen to teams trying to steal an excellent OF who is also a switchhitter. How much money do the Rangers have, and how badly do they want to compete with Houston and Seattle. And, don’t ever think Dipoto wouldn’t love to get Reynolds for the Mariners.

skliesen

I doubt Reynolds sees it that way. Makes little sense to delay FA by one year at this stage of his career.

What may make sense is to do this deal and add on a couple of mutual option years on to it for $25 mm each year.

TNBucs

It makes some sense for Reynolds which is why I think he’s requested a trade instead of just saying he’s not open to an extension–he wants an extension to reduce his risk but wants it closer to market rate. The Pirates don’t want to be on the books for a big total but maybe a shorter extension works for both sides.

Anthony

Small market/ lower revenue teams rarely commit resources long term with the exception being a “generational” type player. This is most likely a function of their dependence on revenue sharing and its uncertainty under “the next” CBA.

I agree here, shorter deal with higher AAV, add option years but still needs to grade out below market value.

Bryan Hall

The problem with the shorter extension is that it takes Reynolds into an area (early 30s) where he won’t see a big contract. Given his age and when he will see free agency, he likely will have one big contract in his career. He has probably determined it will not be here and the longer he stays here the more risk he loses out on a big contract (eg, injury). Should the Pirates pay premium rates for Reynolds at ages 33 and 34 and potentially hurt their ability to lock-in some of the younger guys? The answer may be no. There may be no bad guy here–just the reality of the free market.

TNBucs

A shorter extension than the rumored six years might strike the right balance–Reynolds still hits free agency at, say, 31 while he also guarantees ~$50MM over the next four years. For the Pirates, they don’t get more than one of Reynolds’ FA years but they extend their window with Reynolds and he’ll then leave just as our prospects currently in the upper levels start getting expensive.

RaisetheJollyRancherGirl

5 year with a mutual option at say $23M could work, too in case he’s really liking where the team is.

JoeNastasi

Well said, but majority of fans will still make it solely about Nutting being cheap. Reality is the Bucco’s are holding about 80% of the cards & it would be bad business to do something stupid. Reynolds can be unhappy about his situation, but he just doesn’t have enough cards to win.
Unfortunately for both sides it’s playing out the way it needs to.

Zack

For franchise “morale”, the best possible outcome is a reverse and Reynolds signing an extension. I don’t know… maybe someone is willing to give up legit major league ready talent. That’s the only thing that would keep me from crying in a corner the entire offseason.

skliesen

Can’t imagine the Pirates are going to kick this can down the road. Makes no sense to allow an open sore to fester in a year the youth movement kicks into overdrive.

Either Reynolds gets dealt for players who will replace his predicted production in ‘24, ‘25, and beyond, or he’s extended.

My guess is he’s dealt, and most likely this week.

JoeNastasi

His trade window doesn’t open up until Judge situation is resolved. If Pirates want an overpay, then they need the Yankees sitting at the poker table – Judge on their roster. I’m not saying it’s the Yankees that will overpay, but it’s the Yankees who could force an overpay

adicesa14

All these suggestions make sense but, of course, nobody but the actual participants know what’s really transpiring. Yet, as a Pirate fan, this predictable situation is deeply depressing. We will most likely lose our best player unless he chooses to sign an undervalue contract. Pirate fans and many of the fans of other major league teams continue to suffer through these ‘lose-lose’ situations. It may be true that Pirate management is excessively thrifty, the Reynolds ‘team’ may have contracted a ‘Boras fever,’ but the real root-cause is the MLB system, specifically the lack of a ‘cap.’ I can’t speak for others but I’m personally tired of former Pirate players and prospects, i.e., McCutchen, Cole, Marte, Taillon, Meadows, etc. succeeding elsewhere because the Pirates couldn’t (or wouldn’t?) accommodate their salary demands. Poor attendance in Pittsburgh and elsewhere is no accident. MLB is ‘killing the goose that laid the golden egg,’ and they’re running out of cities large enough to accommodate an existing franchise.

Last edited 2 months ago by adicesa14
skliesen

MLB Owners and MLBPA have colluded to create an Economic System which favors large markets. It sucks for fans of small/mid size markets. But complaining about it solves nothing. What we fans need to expect and demand from management is a commitment of continuous improvement through talent acquisition via draft, IFA signings, lower level FA signings, and most importantly a constant churn of players. This is how the Rays stay competitive in a division where the playing field is incredibly unfavourable for them to do so.

Sprinkling in some world-class player development wouldn’t hurt either.

Cobra

And Bob Nutting voted in favor of the current agreement

Wilbur Miller

Anybody who doubts Nuttin loves the current system is delusional. If he had the sole power to change it, the only thing he’d do is increase his own welfare check.

enriqueromo

and so did Reynolds and his union—so stick to the terms and play ball at the best of your ability

sewer2001

The difference is that the union did not vote in block. And you don’t know how Reynolds voted because the ballot was secret. In fact, the union leadership voted against it. Look it up. There is a lot of dissent among the players. Basically the younger players voted for it because it gave them big raises and the older players who see the problems didn’t. Don’t make false equivalencies. You can hate on unions all you like, but the problem is not caused by the fact that labor is organized.

Last edited 2 months ago by sewer2001
enriqueromo

I don’t hate unions, to the contrary I find them to be a valuable factor in our market economy. What I do object to is wanting the best of all worlds—-the protection of a union and the freedom of a solo actor. There seems to be a willingness to overlook this very anti-pirate fan action by Reynolds because we don’t like Bob Nutting.

Wilbur Miller

That’s exactly what he’s always done. Requesting a trade has exactly zero to do with sticking to the terms or not.

adicesa14

You’re right, of course. My lament was certainly impulsive but complaining won’t help. It’s true that large market MLB owners created an economic system to their favor but only at the MLB level. When some enterprising ‘small market’ team devises a tactic to help them sign and develop players, it’s prohibited or copied, a strategy that can’t be applied to player salaries by the small markets. Teams like the Yankees, Dodgers, and Red Sox have a huge advantage and refuse to ‘level the playing field.’

Zack

It isn’t fun to root for more ex Pirates than current Pirates. I’m with you, I’d love to see an extension. Down in Atlanta they are locking up every player they can and I’m envious.

sewer2001

Every team lets more players go than they keep. I think it’s important to remember that the Pirates, while perhaps the worst at the moment, are not alone suffering under the current system.

enriqueromo

I hope the Pirates keep him and watch him either behave like a pro or cut off his nose to spite his face. Can’t stand negotiations through the medial bs.

skliesen

Negotiating through the media may be unsavoury, but it’s known to work and is pretty much the only tool players under team control have at their disposal.

I don’t hold it against him one little bit for asking for a trade after Pirates didn’t meet his salary demands.

enriqueromo

Only tool??? The arbitration process is a pretty strong tool. Remember he agreed to be part of a union and to live by the rules established in the agreement. So we should reward a person/team participating in “unsavory” tactics by giving them what they want which they can’t achieve through the terms of their legal contract?

skliesen

Just look no further than Kris Bryant as an example of what Bryan Reynolds is doing. Worked out pretty well for him.

Demanded to be traded from a rebuilding club before FA, got dealt to a contender, then signed a large FA contract. I’m fairly certain this is the blueprint Reynolds is working off of.

enriqueromo

I agree with your observation—-my contention is that we should not accept behavior as justified

MB21

It may seem infantile but I never can feel sorry for people making more money in a couple years for playing a sport than I will make at a “real” job. People can give all kinds of reasons to justify the pay but in the end millions of dollars to play ball has little intrinsic value to our society (and I say that as a fan).

ArkyWags

The alternative is the billionaire owner just sits on the money otherwise.
Do you have the same attitude towards other entertainers? Actors? Musicians? The players and musicians are the entertainers.

MB21

Do I have the same attitude towards other entertainers? Yes. (Really even more so since I am a sports fan but not really as much of a music, theatre or movie fan.)

What difference does it make whether the billionaire owner has the money or the millionaire player has the money? That both types of people exist (along with “other” entertainers in the same category) is a ridiculous aspect of our society. Why should we worship these people so much that their income is so exorbitant compared to most everybody else? Do we really believe the court jester is the most important member of the court?

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