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Pirates Rebuilding, Shipping Bay?

Pirates fans, get ready for some big changes.  Rob Biertempfel reports:

Over the new couple of weeks, the Pirates will hire a new manager, scouting director, director of player development and assistant general manager. The turnover could extend to coaches and scouts throughout the system.

New facilities are rising in Bradenton, Fla., and the Dominican Republic. The club also plans to develop a leaner, more efficient data storage system.

Red Sox Pitching Coach John Farrell is the reported favorite to be the Buc's skipper and Theo Epstein has been singing his praises, writes John Perrotto of the Beaver County Times:

"John has brought so much to our organization," Red Sox GM Theo Epstein said. "He's brought a sense of accountability to the pitching staff and he is just so organized in everything he does. He prepares our pitchers both mentally and physically every day of the season. He is an extremely sharp guy and the only thing he lacks is much major-league experience as a coach."

Indeed it's an exciting time to be a Pirates fan after a bit of a dry spell.  Tim noted that the Pirates may shop Jason Bay this winter.  With these structural changes taking place at the developmental levels it seems even more likely.

Posted By Nat Boyle


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I live in the Boston area and follow the sox pretty closely, and i can say that Farrell seems really intelligent. He got to know all of the pitchers very well personally and is very committed to his job. It could be a blow to the sox if he leaves (unless they got Mazzone)

I'd love to see the Cubs get in on Jason Bay. What would the Bucs accept in return? I know this won't be an Aramis Ramirez type dumpoff.

Buccos could use a lot. The more I think about it, there is no huge glaring hole to fix, but I think almost every position is open to change. That being said, top quality prospects-5 tool players. I think trading a guy like Bay you get the best guys out there and do not try to address position wants or needs.

I think trading Bay now would be a mistake. He had a down year by his standards. .300-30-100 is a reasonable expectation for him in '08. That will put butts in the seats and could add a prospect or two to his value. Trading him now is selling low on your biggest trading chip.

I think that Farrell as the Pirates manager would be a bad idea, in the sense I am a Red Sox fan.

For the Pirates, it would be a great hire. You would have complete confidence he would get the best out of his players on a daily basis, and spending a year with Francona who is very good at that very thing only helps.

He was always talked about as a potential GM one day wasn't he?

I am not sure what the pirates would get for him at this stage. He signed for very good salaries through the rest of his deal. I have no doubt someone will offer up for him but will anyone offer one top prospect for a chance???? The Dodgers, Rays and d-backs have the best minor league systems, but they are both loaded with options that might be viewed as just as attractive. how about a pitcher from the twins locker,,, that I could see happening. fits both teams needs nicely and the salary is probably acceptable to minn. do the bucs need more pitching??

yeah, id only like to see bay go in the absolute right deal. maybe for a couple of the dodgers youngs. i wouldnt mind seeing jack wilson flipped to the tigers then centering a bay deal around chin lung hu and hopefully a good pitcher and just go into complete rebuild mode.

Tim et al,
Do you think the Cubs could get Bay for Marshall + Erik Patterson? E-Pat's been mentioned as a good-hitting 2B, with suspect defense...Marshall is who he is...would it be enough? Or would it take another real good prospect/MLB ready player to get a deal like that done? If The Cubs got Bay and he returned to his '06 form, you'd have a line-up of:
Jones (unless Pie takes the job from him)
SS (Cedeno? Theriot?)
That'd be a tough line-up.

And before all of you bash for "Cubs fans dreaming up trades that will never happen," hey, we're cubs fans, that's what we do. Give us a break, it's been 100 years!!!

Sorry cubbie fans, that trade would never happen. I think at least one top notch prospect is needed to land Bay. Jason Bay may have had a bit of a down year this year, but still is allstar talent and he's not expensive(that alone carries a lot of weight..i.e any team can afford Jason Bay, making all teams eligible for trade)

I mentioned earlier the pirates should just take the best player available and not worry about positions, well they have Freddy Sanchez at second, the only true lock on the pirats 08 roster. So unless the patterson is the next ryan sandberg, I dont think the pirates need a 2b. As far as pitchers, the Pirates have a laundry basket fool of potential star pitchers, that for one reason or another have yet to pan out....Duke, Maholm, Burnett, Bullington, Lincoln. So unless the Pitcher is can't miss, I think the Pirates should stay away from making the key piece to the Jason Bay trade a pitcher.

Finally, I doubt the Pirates will trade bay within their own division, and if they do, the stakes would be higher than teams in other divisions. Aramis Rameriez deals only come along once in a life time...or once in a bad ownership group?

hey guys,

I'm pretty much a die-hard Bucco fan, so I feel I have a good understanding of the situation.

The Pirates have glaring needs. In fact, catcher, first base, second base, shortstop, third base, outfield, and starting pitching come to mind.

A deal that would interest Huntington would be one based around at least 2 stud prospects. For example, Wladimir Balantien and Adam Jones of the Mariners. On top of that, they'd be expected to throw in a couple of A-Ball prospects with high ceilings.

As a poster above stated, Marshall and Patterson from Chicago will under no circumstances get a deal done. Never. Now just for the sake of discussion, Pie would be a nice fit here. We are in brutal need of a center fielder and leadoff man, because one of the top 5 or 10 prospects in the game, OF Andrew McCutchen, is still at least a year or two away and is likely better suited for a corner position than in center.

"Finally, I doubt the Pirates will trade bay within their own division, and if they do, the stakes would be higher than teams in other divisions. "

I don't buy into it. Let's say the Cubs/Reds/Cards/Brewers/Astros trade two prospects that eventually turn into studs for Jason Bay. Then those teams would be shooting themselves for trading a couple of stars within the division. The only way I see a team not trading within the division is if they know they won't be getting something equal in return (total salary dump), or for spite.

If an NL Central team offers the Pirates something better than an American League team, that won't be, nor should it be, a major factor. This team needs to be rebuilt and get the best package possible if Bay is dealt.

Personally, I would package a deal including a couple of the following: Pie, Marshall, Murton, Colvin, Gallagher. Bay is young and would be worth trading a few really good young players.

All things being equal, an NL central team will not land Bay. I mentioned before, if the NL central offers more or better quality player/s, of course the Pirates would make that move. Trading prospects if a dice roll, so to say that the other club would shoot themselves in the foot isn't completely accurate.
Especially since they will be receiving a 30hr, 100rbi, solid defensive player(when his knees are good) I think the Pirates facing a lineup of Soriano, Bay, Lee, and Rameriez would be a bullet hole in the foot myself.

The cub players mentioned above are quantity for quality outside of Pie.(though the more I read on Pie the more questions rise about him in cubbie land....so I don't know if I would want him to be the key piece to the trade. Which happens to be their biggest star on the rise)

Bottom line, the cubs have a very solid major league team, a very suspect at best farm system. The Pirates should pursue a trade with the Dodgers or the Twins, both teams have an interest in bay and both teams have stocked farm systems.

I gotta comment on something the die-hard Bucco fan said. He claimed the Pirates need help at C, 1B, 2B, SS, 3B, OF, SP. At 2B they've got Freddy Sanchez, who's as solid as they come. At 1B, even if they deal their only decent LH bat in Adam LaRoche, they've got Steve Pearce to take over (though I think he's destined for RF).

Catcher is a major problem, since neither Rolly-polly Paulino or Ryan DL Doumit can hack it defensively. That said, there are very few good catchers in the minors right now, so forget about fixing that position with this trade (seriously, can anyone name a good catching prospect whose team might actually part with him? Jeff Clement doesn't count; he can hit but can't field and is destined to the M's DH once they wake up and realize Jose Vidro sucks).

The Pirates' biggest need for years on the offensive side of things is a leadoff hitter. Even in the early 90s they didn't have a good one, and it killed their offense in crunch time. Trying to find a leadoff-hitting SS or 2B might be tough, so they might as well look for an outfielder who can leadoff, a third baseman with power, a starting pitcher who can throw strikes... OK, fine, they're not gonna get all that, even for Bay. I'm not even sure what their other tradeable pieces (Wilson, Nady, Duke) can fetch. We'll see if this regime can evaluate talent better than Dittlefield (they can't get much worse).

I've basically resigned myself to the Buccos breaking the Phillies' mark for consecutive losing seasons in '09. They should just blow up the team and start from scratch; if fans keep showing up at PNC after 15 straight years of woe, another 3-4 won't hurt the box office, which is still what Nutt-less cares about the most.

Go Penguins, go Steelers. Thank the lord for the both of you.

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