Bryan Reynolds just requested a trade from the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Detroit Tigers should take advantage.
The 2022 MLB Winter Meetings start tomorrow, but the hot stove is already burning. Multiple trades have already gone down, and the first big free agent domino fell yesterday with Jacob deGrom signing a five-year deal with the Texas Rangers. The Detroit Tigers, of course, signed Matthew Boyd to a one-year, $10 million deal on Thursday.
News just broke from FanSided's own Robert Murray that Pittsburgh Pirates' OF Bryan Reynolds has requested a trade. Apparently talks on an extension have gone nowhere, so he wants out.
Reynolds has seemingly been on the trade block for years now. He's always someone that comes up in trade talks because he's relatively young, controllable, and the Pirates aren't competitive. He seems like the perfect target for the Detroit Tigers.
Scott Harris is looking for a right-handed hitting outfielder, but Reynolds will do him one better: he's a switch hitter. He's got a 133 wRC+ over the last two years. He walks close to a 10% rate for his career. He had a 6.1 fWAR in 2021. He's a great player. But going into his age 28 season with three years of team control left, he won't be easy to acquire. He'll be awfully pricey.
This is espeically important considering the Pirates say they aren't going to move Reynolds despite his request to be traded. This is most likely just a PR bit to create a bidding war and drive up his price even further. At least half the league will be interested in him. The Detroit Tigers will have tons of competition. But that's not to say they can't pull this trade off.
They have the resources. Jackson Jobe is at least two, if not three years away from being big-league ready. Start with him. The Tigers have shown the ability to develop pitching, so this wouldn't be as a big of a loss as it may seem, espcially if they plan on extending Reynolds (which they should).
The Tigers could also move someone from the big league team, likely one of their relievers. Gregory Soto may not have a ton of value right now, but like Reynolds, he has three years of team control left himself. The Boyd signing gives them some room to trade a starter. A young pitcher like Beau Brieske, Joey Wentz, or even Matt Manning could be a candidate here.
The Detroit Tigers must improve their offense. They have the resources to pull off a trade like this. As fans, we're just not used to a front office that gets creative. Scott Harris can do that. The Tigers should be in on Reynolds from the get-go. Even if they get out-bid by another team, they could at least say they tried.