The easiest way to alienate a star player is to lowball them in extension talks. Guess what the Pittsburgh Pirates did?
According to Jon Heyman, the Pirates did make Bryan Reynolds a long term extension offer. That deal was for six years and a total of $75 million.
Pittsburgh Pirates not even close to fair offer for Bryan Reynolds
To be fair to the Pirates, this would be the largest contract in franchise history. Ke’Bryan Hayes holds the current record with his eight year, $70 million extension signed last year. At the same time, it is easy to see why this offer is approximately $50 million less than Reynolds would have wanted and why he had requested a trade.
Reynolds would be worth every cent of what he is asking for. He has produced a .283/.368/.492 batting line in his 1260 plate appearances over the past two seasons, hitting 51 homers and 54 doubles. The Pirates need that type of production in the middle of their lineup if they are going to emerge from their current rebuild.
At the same time, there are precious few solid center fielders in the majors. Reynolds would likely get far more than what he may be asking for if he was a free agent and on the market. The Pirates may even be able to negotiate down from his possible asking price or get an additional year added to the extension.
Instead, the Pirates chose none of the above. They ignored the market and the rules of supply and demand. Yes, they still have three years of team control over Reynolds, and there is still time to work out an extension, but these lowball offers are remembered. For a team such as the Pirates, who are trying to prove that they are serious about wanting to contend at some point, this offer does the exact opposite.
The Pittsburgh Pirates extension offer to Bryan Reynolds was not even close to fair. It is no surprise that he wants out at this point.