Chicago won’t be getting a compensatory draft pick if Juan Pierre leaves as a free agent, as the White Sox declined to offer arbitration to the veteran outfielder with Type B status.
Pierre hit .279 with his usual lack of power and plate discipline, posting a sub-.700 OPS for the fourth time in five years. He also ceased being a positive factor on the bases, going just 27-of-44 on steal attempts.
It’s possible another team will view Pierre as still being a capable center fielder despite his playing exclusively left field for the past two seasons, but short of that the odds are seemingly against his finding another full-time gig at age 34.
Pierre just completed a five-year, $44 million contract that paid him $8.5 million in 2011.
As expected, the White Sox did offer arbitration to fellow Type B free agent Mark Buehrle.
Fox 26’s Mark Berman reports that the Astros and third baseman Alex Bregman have agreed to $100 million contract extension. MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart confirms a deal has been reached and adds that the deal is actually for five years, beginning after the 2019 season. The contract will cover all three of Bregman’s arbitration years and two years of would-be free agency.
Bregman, who turns 25 years old later this month, has quickly become one of the best third basemen in baseball. Across parts of three seasons, he has hit .282/.366/.500 with 58 home runs, 208 RBI, 224 runs scored, and 29 stolen bases. FanGraphs credited him with 7.6 Wins Above Replacement, tied with Francisco Lindor and Christian Yelich for the fourth-best mark among position players in baseball, trailing only Mookie Betts (10.4), Mike Trout (9.8), and José Ramírez (8.0).
This is obviously a smart move for the Astros, as this contract extension will secure Bregman’s age 25-30 seasons. With second baseman José Altuve also locked up through 2024, and presumed extensions to come for Carlos Correa and possibly Gerrit Cole and George Springer, the Astros have a core that they can build around for years to come.