Craig Kimbrel is the most patient man in baseball.
Kimbrel is still without a job despite the baseball season nearing the conclusion of its third week of action. As one of the best relievers in baseball, it's surprising Kimbrel is still available, assuming his contract demands aren't unreasonable.
While Kimbrel initially wanted a deal which would make him the highest-paid AAV reliever in baseball history, it would seem he's backed down from that demand.
Free-agent closer Craig Kimbrel continues to seek a deal he believes to be fair and in the range of two recent free-agent relievers, Wade Davis (3 years, $52M) and Zack Britton (3/$39M), sources tell The Athletic.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) April 13, 2019
This is by no means unreasonable for Kimbrel. Still just 30 years old, Kimbrel still has several seasons left as a top-tier closer in the MLB, and given some of the bullpen issues we've seen thus far around baseball (cough: Cubs), it's tough to comprehend why there isn't more buzz surrounding the World Series champion.
Of course, Kimbrel was exposed at times last postseason, but his camp will reiterate that was due to a high usage rate. The point remains, however, that there is a reasonable doubt.
At some point, a team will balk and given Kimbrel what he believes to be a reasonable deal. Especially as the season progresses, contenders will look to add valuable pieces to the 'pen. Why trade a prospect when there's still a stud closer in free agency?