Pittsburgh Pirates righty A.J. Burnett is "50/50" on whether or not he should retire following the 2013 season or continue playing for at east one more year according to a report from the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
AJ Burnett told our Karen Price that he’s 50-50 on treturning or retiring after the season, he indicated if he returns it would be as a Pirate, though some team might be willing to make a lucrative, multi-year offer.
I can’t seen the Pirates making Burnett a multi-year offer. But I think it makes sense to make a qualifying offer to Burnett, which would be one-year and about $14 million. If Burnett signs elsewhere the Pirates would receive draft pick compensation. If he retires he retires, and if he signs the one-year offer the Pirates add starting pitching depth which they need with questions hovering over Jeff Locke and Wandy Rodriguez
The Pirates' playoff fate will play a major decision in whether or not Burnett will come back next season. Pittsburgh is currently 88-66 and are two games behind the Cardinals in the NL Central for first place.
The 36-year old veteran is in his second season with the Pirates after being traded by the Yankees. In 28 starts this season, Burnett has a 3.43 ERA with a 1.24 WHIP. He current leads the National League with 9.8 strikeouts per nine innings.
The Pirates are unlikely to offer Burnett a multi-year contract after the five-year deal, $82.5M contract he signed with the Yankees in 2008 expires after the season. Pirates general manager Neal Huntington has expressed interest in the past regarding bringing Burnett back for next season.