Cincinnati Reds should hope for Trevor Bauer to entertain multi-year deals

ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 30: Trevor Bauer #27 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches in the second inning of Game One. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 30: Trevor Bauer #27 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches in the second inning of Game One. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images) /
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The difference in draft compensation for the Reds depends on the amount of Trevor Bauer’s new deal.

Trevor Bauer is now a free agent and will be one of the hottest names on the market. The Cincinnati Reds extended a qualifying offer to Bauer yesterday that he’ll surely reject. This year’s offer is worth $18.9M, but there’s a chance that Bauer could sign for $30M-plus this winter. A longterm deal with another team would greatly benefit the Reds draft compensation.

Trevor Bauer has consistently said throughout his career that he’d only sign a series of one-year deals. His tone has changed a bit recently, with his agent Rachel Luba proclaiming that Bauer will listen to any and all offers.

To be honest, should Bauer be able to work out a deal with the Cincinnati Reds, a one-year contract would be preferable. It only keeps the Reds on the hook for the right-hander’s 2021 salary and would give Cincinnati another year to develop the likes of Hunter Greene and Nick Lodolo.

But, if Trevor Bauer is to sign elsewhere, the Cincinnati front office should be hoping the likely Cy Young Award winner can land a multi-year contract. Why? The draft compensation the Reds will receive should Bauer not return to the Queen City would dramatically increase if the right-hander finds a deal worth more than $50M.

Trevor Bauer has until November 11th to accept or decline the qualifying offer. As we mentioned, he most certainly will decline it. That decision guarantees the Reds a draft pick if Bauer signs on to play for another team.

If Bauer signs with another club for $50M or more, Cincinnati will receive a draft pick before Competitive Balance Round A of the 2021 MLB Draft. Should Bauer sign for less than $50M, that pick would come after Compensation Round B.

Last year, an additional pick following Compensation Round A would have fallen around No. 36 overall. The Cleveland Indians were able to snag talented right-hander Tanner Burns with that selection this past year. A pick after Compensation Round B would be in the same range where the Reds selected Jackson Miller with the 65th overall pick.

Thirty spots in the 2021 MLB Draft is nothing to sneeze at, especially considering the likely economics of baseball following the pandemic shortened 2020 season will have general managers looking to tighten the belt.

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The Cincinnati Reds will no doubt make a run at re-signing Trevor Bauer, but in the end, I believe it won’t be enough. However, Cincinnati could still gain a high-level draft pick if Bauer decides to sign elsewhere this offseason.