Pittsburgh Pirates Avoid Arbitration With Five Players

Aug 23, 2023; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA;  Pittsburgh Pirates right fielder Connor Joe (2) reacts
Aug 23, 2023; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates right fielder Connor Joe (2) reacts / Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Before Thursday's deadline to do so, the Pittsburgh Pirates agreed to deals for the 2024 season with each of their five remaining arbitration eligible players

Thursday was the deadline for MLB clubs to agree to terms on a contract with arbitration eligible players for the 2024 season. Before the 1 PM ET deadline, the Pittsburgh Pirates agreed to terms with five players, avoiding arbitration.

These five players were starting pitchers Mitch Keller and JT Brubaker, reliever David Bednar, first baseman/outfielder Connor Joe, and outfielder/designated hitter Edward Olivares.

Keller and the Pirates agreed to a contract worth $5,442,500 for the 2024 season. This is a well deserved raise for the Pirate ace who is coming off his first career All-Star Game appearance last season when he was worth a career best 2.9 WAR, while posting a career high in innings pitched (194.1) and starts (32).

As for Brubaker, after missing all of 2023 due to Tommy John surgery he is now set to make $2,275,000 in 2024. Brubaker should be set to return to the majors early this season and will look to provide a boost to a Pirate starting rotation that is still in need of help.

Coming off his second consecutive All-Star Game appearance, Bednar settled with the Pirates for $4,510,000. One of the best relief pitchers in the National League, the local product will be relied upon to anchor the Pirate bullpen once again in 2024.

Joe settled for $2,125,000, while the newly acquired Olivares settled for $1,350,000. Joe is coming off an underrated season with the Pirates in which he posted a 107 wRC+ and OPS+. At worst, Joe should platoon with Rowdy Tellez at first base this season while once again being a strong role/utility player.

As for Olivares, the Pirates acquired him from the Kansas City Royals earlier this offseason. The right-handed hitting outfielder should have an opportunity to see plenty of playing time with the Pirates. In fact, with how the 40-man roster is currently constructed Olivares may have a legitimate shot to win an every day job either in right field or as the team's DH, depending on what Andrew McCutchen does. If nothing else, he should platoon with Jack Suwinski in the outfield.

Earlier in the offseason the Pirates agreed to a $1,600,000 deal with reliever Ryan Borucki for the 2024 season. Following the five contracts agreed upon on Thursday, the Pirates have been able to avoid arbitration with each of their arbitration eligible players this offseason.

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