With a 16-7 record, the Pittsburgh Pirates currently boast the best record in the National League.
Did you have them leading the way in the NL Central after almost a month of play?
We certainly didn’t.
But baseball is full of pleasant surprises.
Outfielder Bryan Reynolds has been a big part of that excellent start.
He has cooled off some by now, but let’s not forget his scintillating performance to begin the season gave the Pirates a lot of victories.
He is being rewarded with an eight-year, $106.75 million extension.
Bryan Reynolds and the Pirates agree on an 8-year, $106.75M extension with a club option for 2031, per Robert Murray. pic.twitter.com/wZRYYUdRcr
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) April 25, 2023
The Pirates had been trying to secure a deal for a while now.
Their first offer, made a few months ago, was rather insulting and resulted in a trade request.
A lot has changed since that moment.
Even if Reynolds certainly deserved more given his track record, youth, and projections, he finally secured a long-term deal that will make him the face of the Pirates’ return to relevancy.
People on Twitter reacted to the news.
Some consider the total amount in the contract to be well short of what he deserves:
I'm shocked he's settling for 13M a year when a direct comp to him in George Springer is making 25M a year at an older age and isnt a CFer anymore. Reynolds defensive metrics for CF are bad, but the offense is close. 132 wRC+ for Springer vs 125 for Reynolds in a down year.
— Jacob Browne (@strictlysportsp) April 25, 2023
Bryan Reynolds should fire his agent
— Padres Doomer Until WS Win (@PadresDoomer) April 25, 2023
Others, on the other hand, are celebrating the fact that Pittsburgh, after several years dodging big expenditures, are finally showing they are committed to winning or at least competing.
BIG DAY FOR THE BUCCOS!!!@Pirates
— p – Linus Ullmark Enjoyer (@TheMaster_Plan_) April 25, 2023
Wow much deserved!!!
— Stott the GOAT is back😈 (@Dinger_d) April 25, 2023
The Pittsburgh Pirates have the best record in the National League and just extended their best player in Bryan Reynolds. This is unseen positivity for Pirates fans. #LetsGoBucs
— Locked On Pirates (@LockedOnPirates) April 25, 2023
After a series of painful years, it’s officially time to say this: it’s a good time to be a Pirates fan.
They haven’t made the playoffs since 2015, but if Oneil Cruz comes back strong from his injury, some of their breakout players (Connor Joe, Jack Suwinski, and others) can somehow maintain their current level, and Johan Oviedo and Mitch Keller can keep developing as a strong 1-2 rotation punch, they can have a shot at returning to October.
Those are big ifs, but Pittsburgh finally has hope.
The Reynolds extension certifies that.NEXT: MLB Insider Reveals Massive Bryan Reynolds Update