Is Bryan Reynolds on the Move?by Rephael Negnewitzky July 20, 2022 0 comments
The trade deadline creeps closer and the buzz around Bryan Reynolds is a trending topic. While he’s not expected to hit free agency until 2026, Reynolds has drawn interest from several teams in contention. The Pirates have shopped for Reynolds in recent years but the all-star outfielder has achieved his true market value. He is likely to receive a bulkier contract from contending teams than a measly $13.5 million in Pittsburg. Teams who are competing for a playoff spot are anxious to piece together a playoff-like roster and are vulnerable to a larger deal. Although, the Pirates have been hesitant to ship off their star outfielder and perhaps he will stay put if they aren’t satisfied with any offers.
While his all-star 2021 campaign is in the past, Reynolds held his own in the first half of the season. Slashing .261/.343/.465 with 15 long bombs, the 27-year-old is on track to surpass his 24 dingers in 2022. While his whiff rate has taken a hit compared to last season, his wRC+ has struck the 126 mark. Although an apparent oblique strain has placed him on the 10-day IL, the center-fielder will be a key resource to whichever organization he ends up with. Here are a few potential landing spots for the switch hitter.
New York Yankees
Reynolds has been a top priority for Brian Cashman to bring to the Bronx and the Yankees seem to be a likely landing spot. While the Yankees have filled the absence of a permanent center fielder, with Aaron Judge shifting over, they might just stick Reynolds in a corner spot. They did pick up former Cardinal Matt Carpenter, but his inexperience in the outfield might keep him at the DH spot. A deal for Reynolds would likely hold out Jasson Dominguez and Anthony Volpe but Trey Sweeney could be on the move. With Volpe and Oswald Peraza hoarding the shortstop role, Sweeney might not hold up in the Yankees system. Pitchers like Luis Medina and Randy Vasquez would be involved as well.
San Diego Padres
The Padres outfield isn’t too sturdy and the 27-year-old could be the next move for A.J. Preller. They do have Trent Grisham in center who is a plus in the defensive department, yet his bat isn’t all there. Possessing a .190 batting average over 294 plate appearances is not acceptable and Reynolds would provide consistency at the plate. Former first-round pick Robert Hassell is climbing through the system but he won’t stick in center field. A package deal would include a couple of minor league arms and a potential position player. Right-hander Victor Lizarraga could be shipped to Pittsburg with the addition of Joshua Mears or Kevin Kopps.
While they acquired Avisail Garcia and Jorge Soler in the offseason, Jesus Sanchez hasn’t been too fortunate in center field. His bat hasn’t been productive and a .261 OPB is a testament to that notion. Bryan De La Cruz has chipped in to fill the center field slot, but his .209 batting average hasn’t budged. The Marlins could use a pure bat from Reynolds and the deadline would be ideal to make an offer. In all likelihood, the top five on the farm will be blocked off and won’t be included in the package. Guys like Eury Perez, Max Meyer, Kahlil Watson, JJ Bleday, and Sixto Sanchez will stay put. 23-year-old Zach McCambley and shortstop Yiddi Cappe are on the table. Since Watson and Jose Salas take up the shortstop role, Cappe could be used as bait for a Reynolds bid.
While void of a steady center fielder, the Phillies have done their best to fill the duties in the outfield. They acquired all-star powerhouse Kyle Schwarber and Nick Castellanos but left out one position. Instead, they settled for utility fielder Matt Vierling and Odubel Herrera. Both have struggled in the first half of the season and it wouldn’t be a stretch to try for Reynolds. While their defensive abilities are vital components of the outfield, their bats have not been completely sound. Tallying eight long bombs between the two is unmatched by 15 out of Reynolds. If a deal would be in the works, Hard-throwing Nick Nelson could be sent to Pittsburg. The Phillies would also toss in a pair of prospects if they hold out Nelson. Flamethrower Francisco Morales and outfielder Jhailyn Ortiz are potential pieces of the offer.
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