This offseason, the Pirates spent about $14MM to add Akinori Iwamura, Octavio Dotel, Ryan Church, Brendan Donnelly, Bobby Crosby, D.J. Carrasco (non-guaranteed), and Javier Lopez. They shedded one decent-sized salary in Matt Capps, but re-invested in a veteran bullpen. Team president Frank Coonelly chatted with fans yesterday at MLB.com; let's take a look.
- Asked about Bryce Harper, Coonelly said the Pirates are scouting the much-hyped potential draft pick but he "is clearly nowhere nearly as developed as Stephen Strasburg was this time last year." In a Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article, Chuck Finder clarified that GM Neal Huntington was not saying Saturday that Harper ranked "No. 9, No. 10 or worse on their draft board." Reading Huntington's specific quotes, he didn't actually reveal much about the Pirates' draft plans.
- Coonelly feels it's likely the Pirates head to Spring Training with the current group, but they'll be "keeping tabs on certain free agents who might be a fit if their financial demands soften." Maybe they'd bring in another fifth starter candidate?
- Coonelly said Church was a better fit for the Pirates than Rick Ankiel, because the Pirates were not willing to guarantee Ankiel a starting job.
- The Pirates' massive overhaul is over, as Coonelly stated, "We do not anticipate an exodus of players off the roster at this year's Trade Deadline."