If the New York Yankees want to take a significant step forward and mortgage their future to reach the World Series in 2023, trading for Pittsburgh Pirates star outfielder Bryan Reynolds is an easy choice.
The Pirates are looking for star pitching prospects in return, but the Yankees don’t have any readily available. The more likely scenario would be Jasson Dominguez or Oswald Peraza, two of the team’s top prospects heading into the 2023 season. In fact, Peraza is expected to feature at shortstop unless Anthony Volpe can surprisingly steal the job.
- Yankees’ top trade target is a certainty to be traded according to MLB insider
- New outfield options for Yankees to entertain this offseason
- Yankees’ desire for Juan Soto hangs on a $400 million decision
The Yankees know Bryan Reynolds would change their outfield:
However, Reynolds remains on the Yankees’ wish list, despite their desire to retain their top prospects. General manager Brian Cashman is waiting patiently to see if his asking price will reduce as the year continues.
Ultimately, the longer Pittsburgh waits, the more leverage other teams may have, especially if Reynolds refuses to play without an extension. According to Jon Heyman of the New York Post, the Pirates offered him a six-year, $75 million extension, which is almost laughable considering what Andrew Benintendi or even Aaron Judge got on the open market.
Reynolds is nowhere close to being as dangerous as a judge, but he did hit .302 with a .390 OBP and 24 homers back in 2021 with a 141 wRC+. This past season, his whiff rate increased a bit but did hit .262 with a .345 OBP, 27 homers, 62 RBIs, and a 125 wRC+.
If the Bombers do want to make a swing at Reynolds, they will have to fend off four other competitors, notably the Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Dodgers, Seattle Mariners, and Miami Marlins.
A trade for the Pirates’ Bryan Reynolds and the signing of a free agent such as A.J. Pollock or David Peralta are among the possibilities the Rangers are considering, according to major-league sources. The Yankees, Dodgers, Mariners and Marlins are among the other clubs interested in Reynolds, but executives throughout baseball continue to express skepticism the Pirates will move him before Opening Day.
The teams listed above have better pitching prospects they can utilize to their advantage, but the Yankees have some of the best prospects in the entire game, which are heavily sought after. Cashman held onto Peraza and Volpe at all costs, but Dominguez is years away from being an impact player for the top team, so trading him now for a proven commodity may be in the cards.
Nonetheless, I wouldn’t expect Cashman to make any moves over the next few weeks, buying his time with the expectation that Aaron Hicks and Oswaldo Cabrera will compete for the starting left field job during spring training.