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Sports AP Source: Pirates sign 3B Ke'Bryan Hayes to 8-year deal

22:31  07 april  2022
22:31  07 april  2022 Source:   msn.com

Pirates 3B Hayes eyes smoother 2022 after rocky rookie year

  Pirates 3B Hayes eyes smoother 2022 after rocky rookie year BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) — Ke’Bryan Hayes spent most of 2021 dealing with an aching left wrist that forced him to miss nearly half the season. The Pittsburgh Pirates third baseman is hoping for smoother sailing in 2022. “That was a little bit of a roller coaster for me. I had to grind through it,” said Hayes, who went on the 60-day injured list after the second game and finished the season on the 10-day IL. “Once I can be in that lineup every day, I know things can take care of themselves.” The Pirates need the 25-year-old to be a difference-maker as they aim to escape last place in the NL Central, a spot they've been anchored in each of the last three seasons.

The Pittsburgh Pirates are building around third baseman Ke'Bryan Hayes.

  AP Source: Pirates sign 3B Ke'Bryan Hayes to 8-year deal © Provided by The Canadian Press

A person with knowledge of the agreement tells The Associated Press the Pirates and Hayes have come to terms on a new eight-year, $70 million deal pending the 25-year-old Hayes passing a physical. The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because a formal announcement isn't expected until the team's home opener on April 12.

Hayes was scheduled to hit third in Pittsburgh's season opener in St. Louis on Thursday.

The deal gives the team some stability as they continue a methodical build-up under general manager Ben Cherington. Hayes, the son of former major leaguer Charlie Hayes and a first-round pick in the 2015 amateur draft, reached the big leagues in 2020.

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Hayes entered the 2022 season hitting .280 in 120 career games. Known for his strong defensive play, Hayes made a splash upon his arrival in September 2020, winning Rookie of the Month during an electric debut but struggled with a left wrist injury that limited him in 96 games in 2021.

The contact also gives a fan base growing antsy after three straight last-place finishes a player to attach itself to. The Pirates are still in a transition period, with most of the prospects they've accumulated since Cherington took over in the fall of 2019 still at least a year or two from arriving in Pittsburgh.

The Pirates are expected to finish at or near the bottom of the NL Central again with a largely unheralded and inexpensive roster. Cherington has said repeatedly that the team will start making investments when it believes it is close to winning, and the agreement with Hayes provides the first tangible evidence of a long-term plan at the big-league level.

The contract, which goes into effect this season carries through at least 2029 and includes an option for 2030.

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Will Graves, The Associated Press

Walker Hayes' Jubilant CMT Awards Debut Is Also Bittersweet: 'That Twinge of a Little PTSD' .
The "Fancy Like" hitmaker remembers his first invitation, in 2018, to appear at the show, the same date that he and his wife lost their newborn daughterWalker Hayes made his debut appearance at the CMT Awards show on Monday night, lighting up the stage with a joyful performance of chart-climber "AA.

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