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).   

28 Responses to Pirates Notes: Pitching, McDonald, Jones, Doumit Leave a Reply

  1. Ian_Smell 5 years ago

    I’m so glad that McDonald came over in that trade. I was not really sure how well he would pitch, but he’s been the Pirate’s best starter this year. I really hope that they get someone to play first or right, I would love for them to get Adam Dunn.

    • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

      No doubt.

      Last night was awesome. I was at the game in my Pirates stuff and there were only about 500 people in the ballpark last night i was crazy. Also, most of tem were Pedro Alvarez-Pirates fans due to Pedro being from the Bronx. Awesome game though. Definetly the best game I’ve been to all season. Great job by J-Mac as well. the guy is awesome and really seems to have figured it out since the trade. And funny thing happened, I made a sign saying “McClutch, Good job yesterday” And it was so funny because DANIEL McCutchen, Joel Hanrahan, and Steven Jackson were trying to get my attention and make it seem like I made the sign for Dan. But it was great and again, awesome when Citi Field is just empty because again, thebest game I’ve been to all season and I’ve been to over 40 games this season.

      • bucs_lose_again 5 years ago

        *Sigh* No wonder we suck so bad. Our bullpen guys are busy trying to get Span’s attention.

        • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

          Well thats certainly one way to look at it. Sorry Pirate fans!

      • malcolmec 5 years ago

        I was at that game also, and was extremely impressed with James McDonald. Since there was no one there they let everyone move down to the field level seats, and from where I was you could really see the break on his curveball, which he was throwing about 70-73 MPH… unfortunately the Pirates couldn’t get any runs before McDonald’s spot came up in the 9th, or he would’ve likely had a complete game shutout. Gee pitched pretty well for the Mets also.

        • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

          I probably saw you there and made talked with you there was like 40 people in attendance. I was row A section 126 but anyway, it was awesome. Great game. I had a great time and said hi to my boy Todd Tichenor who I hadn’t seen for a few weeks. It was fun. Great ballpark!

    • GooseDennis 5 years ago

      Adam Dunn costs more than whatever Nutting and Huntington have in their pockets, plus a thousand dollars. Don’t count on it.

      Speaking of G.I. Jones, he’s almost the reincarnation of Stargell. Not power-wise, but more of “strike out or hit a home run”-wise. Jones had a .144 batting average with a .196 obp and an ops of .523. Meanwhile, he hit 6 home runs. Talk about deja vu. August of last, he had an average of .274 and an obp of .358, while conveniently hitting 6 home runs. Yes, I do realise that .274 and .144 are a hundred and thirty points away from each other, but they’re still pitiful for someone perceived as the best hitter on the team. Let’s face it guys, 2009 was a fluke.

      • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

        Yeah no way does that happen. I say Adam Dun re-signs with the Nats.

    • ateam043 5 years ago

      Frank McCourt and Ned Colleti seriously need to take a hike.

      Was JMac a “change of scenery” candidate? Sure, but the Dodgers never gave him a real shot. They moved him back and forth from starter to bullpen instead of letting him take his licks.

      Carlos Santana, JMAC, Andrew Lambo, Lucas May have all seem to flourish since the Dodgers let them go.


      • Ned Colleti let people like Carlos Santana, Josh Bell, Edwin Jackson, or course now J-Mac, and many young pitching prospects to count! Those are horrible GM moves! The Dodgers could have actually had a very bright future if they kept all of them and hired a manager very willing to work with young players.

        • thegrayrace 5 years ago

          … or if they held on to these players to package them for a marquee player like Cliff Lee, instead of scraps like George Sherrill, Casey Blake, and Octavio Dotel.

          Carlos Santana, Josh Bell, James McDonald, Andrew Lambo + some low level prospects should’ve brought Cliff Lee to the Dodgers in ’09 from the Indians.

      • Dave_Gershman 5 years ago

        Not trying to rub it in, but you forgot about Brett Wallach.

      • thegrayrace 5 years ago

        Even if he was never going to cut it in Dodger blue, he was still worth a heck of a lot more than 2 months of Octavio freakin’ Dotel. And Andrew Lambo was included in the deal? Ugh.

  2. bigpat 5 years ago

    There is a right handed hitter who can platoon with Garrett Jones and his name is Lastings Milledge, it seems our coach as forgot about him yet again. I know he wasn’t setting the world on fire this year, but he was pretty much buried on the bench when he was hitting well, and that doesn’t make sense. Sure, he’s not a .300 hitter and he has a power outage this year, but he was getting timely hits and even walks, something that is missing from this team. I feel like he deserves better than how he’s been treated this year.

    I am so excited about J-Mac though, that deal was a blessing. Nice to see a pitcher on the team who has some decent stuff and can actually do something with it. He looks like a potential 3rd starter at least for the next 5 years. Lambo is also hitting in the minors, amazing to think both of them came from a garden variety old relief pitcher.

  3. we really need new coaching in here

  4. derekbellstutu 5 years ago

    The Bucs should try to acquire at least one of the following pitchers to replace Zach Duke and possibly Paul Maholm: Jorge De La Rosa, Brandon Webb, Wade Davis, Jeff Niemann.

    I can’t believe the Pirates got McDonald AND Lambo for Dotel! This makes up for getting Andy Laroche in the Jason Bay trade.

    • start_wearing_purple 5 years ago

      Did anyone from the Bay trade work out for you guys?

      • Vote_For_Pedro 5 years ago

        Well Bryan Morris dominated in A ball but strugled abit at AA he is a couple years away.Andy Laroche is at best an ok platoon player.Craig Hansen had Tommy John surgery and missed the entire 2010 season and Brandon Moss has not shown us his amazing BP Power everyone of his teamates brag about.But its not all bad at least JBay sucks this year and the mets are stuck paying his massive contract.

      • derekbellstutu 5 years ago

        The Pirates received Craig Hansen, Bryan Morris, Brandon Moss, and Andy LaRoche in the Jason Bay and Manny Ramirez three-way. Hansen is rehabbing in the minors from Paronsage-Turner Syndrome, rare nerve disorder. Bryan Morris is finally pitching to his potential, but still at AA. Brandon Moss played his way from Pittsburgh to AAA, and after tweaking his stance, is hitting better. LaRoche is riding the pine in Pittsburgh and has been dreadful at the plate.

    • The Rays will look at you and say “A. McCutchen for Niemann”. If you wanted Wade Davis you’d better pony up Pedro Alvarez, and a grade A pitching prospect. The Rays are looking for a first baseman to take Peña’s position, because first base is probably where he’s gonna end up.

      • derekbellstutu 5 years ago

        My bad. I forgot for a moment that Ned Colletti wasn’t the Rays GM. There’s no way the Rays would give up a potential #3 starter (James McDonald) an outfield prospect (Lambo) for an over the hill reliever (Dotel).

  5. Slopeboy 5 years ago

    What the Pirates will really do over the winter can be gauged by what they do with Doumit. If they trade him for someone of equal value, then you may be able to believe Huntington is serious about turning the team around. If Doumit is sent away for money or a low level prospect, as in the past, you know that nothing’s changed and all the talk is just that.

    • bbxxj 5 years ago

      I know this perception persists but NH has sent money in deals over the past few seasons (ie 500K in the Dotel deal that netted McDonald) and has done a good job of getting some talent. He hasn’t had that much elite talent to trade away so most of the prospects he has aquired haven’t been top prospects but I feel like he is actually doing the best with what he has and trying to improve the overall talent level of the organization.

    • louis_09 5 years ago

      Slopeboy: so Doumit needs traded, but even though his stock is DOWN, if the Pirates don’t get “equal value” they’re not serious?!?!?! That deserves a “C’MON MAN!”


      IF they do trade him, they’re going to have to accept whatever they can get for him. I say, for $5.1m, keep him rather than selling low. If he can turn it around next year, he will RAISE his value and be a trade-deadline possibility.

      • Slopeboy 5 years ago

        Read the post! I never advocated that Doumit be traded. My point is that all these past years, the FO has talked about improving the team and doing nothing more than cutting payroll and bringing in mediocre players with low salaries. Doumit is making 5MM this year, if they trade him for someone who is making less money and is a lesser player, than you know that nothing has changed. If they keep him or get someone that is better,then you know that they’re really looking to improve on the field. To keep him just to get a better deal would be foolish if you’re trying to improve the team, you should not hope he improves in order to trade him if that is indeed what needs to done.And please don’t use the minor leaguers or draft signings as an example because they are all speculative at this point.

        • louis_09 5 years ago

          Slopeboy: I’m sorry, but I interpreted your ENTIRE POST to be about trading him. Not ONE PIECE of your post mentions keeping him — please go re-read it yourself.

          That said, if you were in the FO somewhere…would you trade someone making less than Doumit, but is comparable skill wise, for Doumit? No. Well that is what your post just said the Pirates should look for — someone with the same talent, but for less $$$. Right?

          The **ONLY** thing we could hope is that someone would want him to catch for them. His 12-18 HR potential, with BELOW average defense in RF, is not attractive for a corner OF position. They are not attractive for much of anything, excluding catcher or middle-infield. Moving him from behind the plate, where he is a defensive liability, to RF DESTROYED his value. All we can hope is that his power numbers & defense improve in RF, or he magically becomes even an AVERAGE catcher. Otherwise I’d hold onto him for risk of “giving up on the organization” by getting low-level minor leaguers for him. You never know, maybe next year a contender in the AL could use him down the stretch. Then again, maybe he’ll hit the ball more next year and become a contributor for the Pirates again!

  6. Mick_Stepp 5 years ago

    Huntington is doing a terrific job given the resources he has at his disposal and the dismal legacy left by Littlefield. Pirates fans should take heart and give him two or three years to rebuild.

  7. thegrayrace 5 years ago

    Pirates fans should call the deal “outstanding”. Dodger fans should call it “Ned Colletti is an f-ing fool.”

Leave a Reply