The Pirates hold a $3.5MM option on Rod Barajas for 2013, but should they decline it, the catcher says that he would be willing to take less to stay in Pittsburgh, writes Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Barajas is making $4MM this season and the option for next year doesn't call for a buyout if it's not exercised.
" I would like to be back here," the 37-year-old said. "If that means we have to try to figure something out, then absolutely."
The Pirates have not approached Barajas about whether they will pick up his option or if they'll look to negotiate a new deal. General Manager Neal Huntington did not rule out Barajas returning in 2013 but also cautioned that the club is "not ready to commit to anything" at the moment.
Pittsburgh could turn to a pair of internal options – Michael McKenry and 2009 first-round pick Tony Sanchez – to fill in at catcher next season should they choose to look elsewhere. Barajas is hitting just .197/.269/.324 with nine homers in 324 plate appearances this year.