As the Pittsburgh Pirates currently face uncertainty over the long-term future of Bryan Reynolds with the team, they are aiming to resolve a dilemma regarding one of their coveted talents.
As noted by MLB Network’s Jon Heyman, the Pirates have made a “long-term offer” to third baseman Ke’Bryan Hayes. The Pirates are expected to make a “serious effort now” to sign him to a new contract deal.
Heyman further added that the Pirates had previously made a push to sign Hayes to an extension deal. Ahead of the 2021 regular season, the Pirates reportedly put forth an extension offer on the table for him, but in the end, there was “no traction” between the two sides for such an agreement.
Hayes revealed last year that the Pirates approached him for a new deal even before he made his debut in the majors. Pirates team officials opened up talks with him on a new contract before the 2020 season, but in the end, no such deal was reached.
Hayes is under team control with the Pirates through the 2026 campaign, as he will not be eligible for arbitration until after the 2023 season.
On Hayes’ part, he is open to staying put with the Pirates. He opened up last year that he aspires to “win a championship with the team that drafted me.”
A year after finishing sixth in the final voting for the 2020 National League Rookie of the Year Award, he wound up playing in 96 total games last season and notched a 6.0 UZR. He posted a .257 batting average and recorded 38 RBI.
Hayes recently suffered a right ankle sprain injury, although he noted that he “should be ready” to feature for Pittsburgh in its regular season opener against the St. Louis Cardinals on April 7.
“I’m pretty much doing everything now,” Hayes said. “They wanted me [to be cautious] with my running, just so I don’t sprain it again and I’m in a boot or something. The last 2-3 days I’ve hit and taken ground balls. The last two days I’ve started running. I’m running full speed.”
The Pirates are coming off of a season where they finished in last place in the NL Central with a 61-101 record.