It had been a quiet offseason for Chad Pinder. Despite numerous teams looking for help in the outfield and for players with defensive versatility, there had been little in the way of rumors regarding his market.
That changed on Monday. Bobby Nightengale of the Cincinnati Enquirer reported that the Reds have signed Pinder to a minor league contract for the upcoming season.
Former Oakland A's utility man Chad Pinder lands with Cincinnati Reds
On one hand, it is not too surprising that Pinder had to settle for a minor league deal. He struggled throughout the 2022 season, posting a disappointing .235/.263/.385 batting line in his 379 plate appearances, hitting 12 homers and 18 doubles while striking out 118 times. That mediocre production was not going to generate much attention.
However, Pinder had been a solid player in the past. His defensive versatility, respectable power, and leadership in the clubhouse made him a valuable option. He had posted a .244/.303/.429 batting line in his 1306 plate appearances over the previous five seasons, hitting 49 homers and 67 doubles. His 99 OPS+ was right around league average, and with his versaility, he had been a solid player.
It is a bit of a surprise that the A's were not more heavily involved considering that he was only able to generate a minor league deal. There had appeared to be interest in a reunion; however, the A's had said that they felt Pinder's market would be beyond their capabilities. As they somewhat surprisingly added players to the major league roster, that assertion seems a bit disengenuous.
The Reds may be a decent destination for Pinder. Like the A's, they are rebuilding, looking for viable talent to fill out their major league roster. If he has a strong showing in spring training, it is entirely possible that he will be able to return to the majors and rebuild his value.
Former Oakland A's utility man Chad Pinder has found a new home. He has signed a minor league deal with the Cincinnati Reds for the 2023 season.