Cleveland Guardians rumors: Asking price for Bryan Reynolds includes starting pitching

Pittsburgh Pirates v New York Mets
Pittsburgh Pirates v New York Mets / Adam Hunger/GettyImages

This probably won't come as much of a shock to read, but the Pittsburgh Pirates are in desperate need of some pitching.

It certainly stands to reason, then, that the Pirates would be looking to acquire as much starting pitching as they can if they are truly going to trade disgruntled star Bryan Reynolds. That's the rumor going around at the moment, especially as it appears the Yankees are in hot pursuit of Reynolds and don't seemingly have the prospect capital in terms of pitching that Pittsburgh would desire - at least at first glance.

You know who does, though? The Cleveland Guardians, a team that has been sniffing around on Reynolds for about two years now.

The Pitchers It Would Take to Acquire Bryan Reynolds

So, let's assume that any deal for Reynolds then requires dealing a haul of pitching talent - perhaps an uncomfortable amount. That being said, the Guardians could conceivably weather that storm, especially if they were perhaps inclined to extend Shane Bieber in the next year or so.

But in order to pry Reynolds away from Pittsburgh, it would no doubt take one of Cleveland's top pitching prospects in either Daniel Espino or Gavin Williams. Either one of those would have to be a prime piece in any deal. And if Cleveland were to trade, say, Espino and Aaron Civale to help give the Pirates some additional pitching depth, along with perhaps a lower-level pitching prospect and someone else within the system at any position (and likely a little more highly regarded), that could very well be enough to get it done.

It's possible too that Pittsburgh would be looking for some major-league position talent as well. It was allegedly what the Oakland A's were after in trade talks for Sean Murphy, and the Pirates could very well be looking at it from the same perspective. If that's the case, it's doubtful the Guardians would make the move. They don't necessarily need Bryan Reynolds, even though it would give them a tremendous lineup at that point. But it's imperative to keep as much young talent as possible, especially the players who have begun to prove themselves at the major-league level. That's just an obvious no-brainer.

Bryan Reynolds still has three more seasons until he becomes a free agent, which is practically an eternity when talking about a trade. The Pirates can afford to be picky, even if Reynolds has already asked to be dealt. It's hard to see him moving before next season, but the clock is certainly ticking on his time in Pittsburgh. Someone with a deep farm system is no doubt going to try to land him while in a prime contention window, and as quickly as possible.

So why not the Guardians?