Pirates Notes: Pitching, McDonald, Jones, Doumit

Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette touched on several Buc-related hot stove topics in an online chat with fans.  Here are a few of the highlights…

  • If the Pirates make any significant winter moves, Kovacevic thinks "there's a better chance that you'll see money invested in pitching than in offense," both because Pittsburgh has more of a pressing need for quality arms and since finding pitching help could be easier.  Kovacevic notes, however, that GM Neal Huntington needs to work at "upgrading the team's mechanisms for finding real pitching talents."
  • Speaking of acquiring pitching, Kovacevic calls the deal that brought James McDonald and Andrew Lambo to Pittsburgh for Octavio Dotel "outstanding."  McDonald has a 3.49 ERA and 2.44 K/BB ratio in eight starts since joining the Bucs.
  • The Pirates may be in the market for a right handed-hitting first baseman or right fielder to be a platoon partner for Garrett Jones.  Kovacevic's Post-Gazette colleague Chuck Finder reported over the weekend that the team was no longer looking at Jones as an everyday player.
  • Kovacevic believes that Ryan Doumit's starts in right field over the last two months have been intended to showcase Doumit for a potential trade.  Doumit is slated to earn $5.1MM next season, the third-highest salary of any player projected to be on the 2011 roster (behind Chris Snyder and Paul Maholm).   

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