For most New York Yankees fans, the ship sailed on hope of a Bryan Reynolds trade weeks ago. The Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder, who requested a trade earlier in the offseason, didn't have his wish granted after the team lowballed him with an embarrassing contract extension offer.
Upon the contract rumors leaking, rumors swirled about potential trade packages based on what insiders believed the Pirates were looking for in return. Turns out, after being unreasonable in their endeavors to keep Reynolds in town, the Pirates followed suit with their trade demands.
Pass. Don't need to overpay for an outfielder, especially if the team couldn't get rid of their existing underperformers. Also, you want to talk about pressure? That would be paying a premium for a guy who's only played 494 career games, all in Pittsburgh, and trotting him out there at the start of the 2023 season alongside the re-signed Aaron Judge and newly-added Carlos Rodón with World Series expectations in tow.
Reynolds, for as good as he is, is far from "the answer" for the Yankees. And paying top dollar on the trade market for an outfielder, the easiest position to address from an availability standpoint, wouldn't have been good business.
But that won't stop the rumors from persisting. After everything quieted down when the Pirates said they wouldn't be moving their star outfielder, a new wrinkle about the contract negotiations between the two sides has breathed new life into what we thought was dead.
Yankees Rumors: Bryan Reynolds contract stalemate with Pirates to force move?
In summation, Reynolds lowered his asking price in the negotiations (after being lowballed) to seemingly get an opt-out clause in return. According to reports, Reynolds would accept the $105 million offer if there was an opt-out clause. And get this, he'd reportedly be open to the Pirates backloading the deal, meaning it would cost them less in the short term!
If this doesn't shape up to be a relationship-ender, then we'd be baffled. Reynolds is under contract through 2025, so it's not like he'd just have to suck it up for one more year and that'd be it. He's got three full seasons left, and there's no way the relationship would be tenable if the Pirates continue to stand their ground.
Since the Pirates' behavior continues to be made public, the Yankees will remain connected in a tertiary sense based on need (they carried Estevan Florial, Franchy Cordero and Aaron Hicks on the bench for Opening Day) and the previous rumors linking Reynolds to the Bronx.
But if we're to believe wherever Empire Sports Media found this tidbit, why would Reynolds be a fit in New York if he prefers a "simpler" setting such as Pittsburgh? Is it even worth going through all this trouble to fight with the notoriously deceitful Pirates for a player that doesn't prefer a bigger spotlight?
Answer: no. Just go get Ian Happ at the trade deadline if he becomes available.