By Jason Shetler
The Pirates have announced that they have agreed to a two-year extension with David Freese, which also includes an option for 2019.
Freese signed with the Pirates in Spring Training to be the third baseman during Jung-Ho Kang’s absence. The former World Series MVP has been terrific in his first season in Pittsburgh, as he’s posted a .792 OPS along with an OPS+ of 110 in 107 games. He’s been even more productive against left-handers, hitting .338 with a .998 OPS.
The extension of Freese is a great move, as he not only will provide the Pirates with a solid bat beyond this season, but also as an insurance policy at third base for Kang. His superb numbers versus lefty pitching should also find himself platooning at first base alongside Josh Bell. It’ll be interesting to see if the Freese extension leads to John Jaso possibly being moved in the offseason.
Update at 2:52 PM: MLB Network Insider Jon Heyman reports that Freese will receive $6.25 million for 2017, $4.25 million for 2018 and a $6 million club option or $500,000 buyout for 2019.