Jack Wilson-Yuniesky Betancourt Not Happening

THURSDAY: Baker has an update: the Pirates find Betancourt too pricey.  Baker is surprised by this, but it seems reasonable to me that they would not want to take on an additional $4MM+ for that kind of project.

MONDAY: According to Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times, the Pirates and Mariners have discussed swapping shortstops Jack Wilson and Yuniesky Betancourt.  Let's break down the details.

  • Wilson, 31, is hitting .254/.289/.310 in 77 plate appearances this year; he missed time with a sprained finger.  He's owed another $5.59MM this year plus a $600K buyout for 2010, for a total of about $6.2MM.  He has a limited no-trade clause that applies to six teams.  Wilson approached the Bucs in March about a possible extension.  John Dewan of The Fielding Bible rated him as the third-best defensive shortstop in the game.
  • Betancourt, 27, is hitting .264/.290/.368 in 132 plate appearances this year.  Earlier this month, manager Don Wakamatsu benched Betancourt to send him a message.  In his book, Dewan rated Betancourt the fourth-worst defensive shortstop in baseball.  Under his contract signed in April of 2007, Betancourt will earn $1.53MM more this year, $3MM in 2010, $4MM in 2011, and a $2MM buyout in 2012 for a total of about $10.5MM. 
  • Given the $4.3MM difference in guaranteed money, I can't see why the Pirates would entertain a deal like this.  Betancourt would be more appealing if he was not locked up.  Even then, he's a project.


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