Bradenton, Florida – Pittsburgh Pirates quarterback Brian Reynolds He knows he got a huge raise after becoming an All-Star and becoming a finalist for both the Gold Glove and Silver Slugger awards, all while playing for $601,000 last season, just above the major league minimums.
The amount of the increase, however, remains uncertain.
Reynolds made a bid of $4.9 million for 2022. The Pirates responded with a bid of $4.25 million. The two sides failed to split the $650,000 teams, leading to a potentially thorny arbitration battle for the best player on the rebuilding team still searching for an identity.
The hackers are a “file and trial” team, choosing to stop the negotiations and go to an arbitration session. Reynolds is coming off his best season, hitting .302/.390/.522 with 35 doubles, eight triples, 24 home runs, and 90 RBIs in 159 games last season.
27-year-old Reynolds knows refereeing sessions can get “chaotic” as teams try to devalue a player, so he expects the Buccaneers to hold the 2020 season against him.
The sport has been closed for nearly four months due to the COVID-19 outbreak, and Reynolds’ timing was off in a short season in which he reached 0.189 with seven homeowners and 19 RBI.
“I mean, you made it very clear,” Reynolds said. “I feel that since then, it would be ridiculous to focus on 60 games in a pandemic season. I think when it comes to that, we’ll see. Yeah, I don’t want to be limited by that. I feel like I kind of turned the page on that.”
Reynolds said the pirates have not offered a long-term contract extension. He has declined previous offers but has maintained that he is open to staying with the pirates even if it is the subject of trade rumours.
“They didn’t say anything about the extension, so it wasn’t really on our minds,” he said. “Obviously I wanted to make a deal so we didn’t have to do it now. But, like I said, that’s part of the game as well.”
The Buccaneers finished last in the National Central League three years in a row and are exiting a 101st losing season. Last week, Reynolds said he wanted to win with the Buccaneers. On Wednesday, Reynolds said he remains open to signing a long-term agreement.
“It doesn’t change anything the way I feel about Pittsburgh or anything like that,” Reynolds said. “Any of my teammates or team or anything like that. I understand it’s part of the game.”
Pittsburgh manager Derek Shelton said he’s not worried about the case reaching Reynolds, whose mediocre style has made him consistent at every level of his game except for 2020.
“I don’t think anything affects Brian Reynolds,” Shelton said. “I think that the only beautiful thing about him is that he stays the same all the time. And wisely, he is a top class player.”
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