Huntington On Rotation, Doumit, McCutchen

Pittsburgh GM Neal Huntington describes the market for available starters as "thin," but says the Pirates "need" to upgrade their rotation. Huntington told MLBTR that he is mindful of pitching prospects such as Rudy Owens, Jeff Locke, Bryan Morris, Jameson Taillon, Stetson Allie and Luis Heredia who are rising through the Pirates system. But they won't prevent him from offering multi-year deals to free agents.

"We're not opposed to multi-year deals for the right player," Huntington said. "But what we can't do is vastly overpay in terms of years and/or dollars just to get somebody … to make ourselves feel better in November. We've got to pay players for what they're going to do, not what they've done."

The Pirates don't have a distinct preference for left-handers or right-handers. Ideally, they'd get a pitcher who can strike people out, but as Huntington points out, every other team wants just that. Recent reports suggest the Pirates are interested in former Rockies lefties Jeff Francis and Jorge de la Rosa

Former Rockies manager Clint Hurdle, now the Pirates' skipper, has not yet discussed Ryan Doumit's 2011 role with Huntington in detail. At this point, Huntington says the Pirates can see him filling a number of roles in 2011.

"We've got the ability to have him catch some; he can be the complement to Chris Snyder; he's got the ability with some Spring Training work to maybe go play some at first and then also the opportunity to go play out in right field. So he's got some versatility," Huntington said.

Huntington declined to comment specifically on Andrew McCutchen, but he acknowledged that the Pirates generally have interest in giving top players security with extensions that cover some free agent seasons. 


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38 Comments on "Huntington On Rotation, Doumit, McCutchen"


Dave_Gershman
4 years 9 months ago

Justin Wilson isn’t on that list and he is the best prospect in the organization not named Taillon/Allie/Heredia…

I really like what they have in James McDonald…I think in order to avoid getting stuck with big contracts and having pitchers who you won’t compete with in ’11…They should just sign stop gaps instead of “De La Rosa’s.”

Sometime towards the end of ’11, we should see Wilson, Owens, Morris, Locke, and Dubee.

4 years 9 months ago

Yeah, really don’t understand the alleged interest in De la Rosa, he did well last year, but he’s going to be requiring too much of a commitment. Francis I can see, maybe Bonderman too, at least he’ll be able to help tell the kids how you can go from one of the worst teams in history to competing in the WS a few years later.

bigpat
4 years 9 months ago

Why is signing a pitcher who’s entering his prime a move that makes you expecting to go to the World Series?

I think he might be better than a veteran guy like Garland or Westbrook because we still haven’t seen the best out of him yet. And a vet would be here for just this season where they probably won’t contend. He’s been a little inconsistent and might be a bust, but he also has the stuff and can dominate for long stretches as he did in 09. He can get signed for a three year deal and hopefully the team will see a solid improvement this season then compete for the playoffs the next two. A few young hitters are in place, they just need to break out,

SteelCityResident13
4 years 9 months ago

we already have enough pitchers like Garland. I don’t want to see anymore come through here since they will cost some money that can be invested elsewhere.

4 years 9 months ago

I never said I was expecting them to go to the WS anytime soon, just that Bonderman can at least relate to the struggles of a terrible team, and has also seen his team go from horrendous to really good in just a couple of seasons.

And in order to get DLR the team will most likely need 3/30 at least, and I really think his best days are behind him already, his entire career he’s been mediocre, and two okay seasons aren’t really worth the type of contract he’s likely to get. Plus he had an injury which he played worse after returning than before leaving, which raises some concerns, he’s been playing in the NL West which is not a strong offensive division, and his peripherals dropped off a tad this season too.

All in all, I really do think his 2009 season is the best he can possibly muster, and to sign him expecting him to repeat is a stretch. But someone will pay him for past performance, and the next couple of seasons we’ll be saying how it was a bad deal and laugh.

Personally, I’d rather see the team invest the money somewhere else (International free agency and amateur signing bonuses) than invest it in a middle of the road pitcher at best and hope they improve this season. Or even just hold onto the money and if they do happen to improve, have a better chance of landing someone who’ll actually help the team.

4 years 9 months ago

This is not the first time I have seen you mention Dubee. He is already a reliever, and a pretty marginal one at that. If you want to look at pirate relief prospects turn to Dan Moskos or Diego Moreno.

Dave_Gershman
4 years 9 months ago

Moskos in AAA: 17 IP 20 BB 10.38 ERA 18 K’s
Moreno: 7.04 ERA in his AA stint…

For now, they will have to rely on Meek and Hanrahan.

4 years 9 months ago

SSS alert!

Ian_Smell
4 years 9 months ago

Wilson is a very underrated prospect, he strikes out a fair amount of guys and keeps the homers down, which I like. I could see all five of those guys making their debuts next year, but I think it will most likely be Wilson, Owens, and Dubee. I think the Pirates should definitely sign DLR, they have no pitching at the ML level that is comparable to him, except for McDonald.

SteelCityResident13
4 years 9 months ago

Ohlendorf is def. capable of being a middle rotation pitcher when he is consistent with his location. He gets some quality movement on his pitches, esp. sinker. Again, goes back to upgrading our infield to help out. McDonald is going to continue developing and dont be surprised if Morton comes out of the gates on fire. He was starting to build confidence again last season, he can easily falter though as well. As for DLR, he would be a good sign to take on the #1 spot. Would give the rest of the rotation the ability to pitch against opposing pitchers that are more comparable to them.

DLR
McDonald
Ohlendorf
Maholm
Morton/Lincoln

Morton/Lincoln/Gallagher – long relief
Resop – short relief
Meek – setup
Hanrahan – Closer

We still need a lefty specialist that can do the job. Obviously the bullpen has more players, take your pick on the rest, I like these guys as the majority.

Ian_Smell
4 years 9 months ago

I really like Morton, it’s just that he doesn’t seem to have enough confidence in his stuff, even though it can be really good. Ohlendorf I like too but, he really got screwed this year though he didn’t pitch that badly. Even if they sign DLR it still isn’t that great of a rotation, but I don’t think Maholm will stay for very long and they’ve got those guys in the minors so hopefully the pitching won’t take long to fix.

SteelCityResident13
4 years 9 months ago

Pitching coach decision is a HUGE deal this season. Agreed though, my projections are just for the start of the season. Maholm wont last the entire season. I hope he does well enough to get us something in return near the deadline. Morton has no confidence, pitching coaches fault. Hint hint, his end of season was a lot better after Kerrigan was gone. Ohlendorf will be fine, as long as he doesnt take another one off the dome! I just hope our AA pitching talent can handle AAA early and dont become busts. <<< atleast 2 will make it.

pirateswillwinin2013
4 years 9 months ago

forgot Ledezma, he already resigned

pirateswillwinin2013
4 years 9 months ago

Justin Wilson is getting traded for Garza! :) thats why! lol

Dave_Gershman
4 years 9 months ago

I could actually see him packaged along with a few others to get Garza…

Justin Wilson, Michael Dubee, Calvin Anderson, and Chase D’Arnaud for Garza?

SteelCityResident13
4 years 9 months ago

No chance

Ian_Smell
4 years 9 months ago

Even with his down year, I wouldn’t trade d’Arnaud because he’s the best answer to shortstop the Pirates have.

4 years 9 months ago

I would agree, as much as the Bucs need pitching I wouldn’t move D’Arnaud (also I think the Rays will target OF’s/1B since they are pretty set up the middle). The Pirates should add a free agent or two, but waiting on the young arms is the best bet.

4 years 9 months ago

I would agree, as much as the Bucs need pitching I wouldn’t move D’Arnaud (also I think the Rays will target OF’s/1B since they are pretty set up the middle). The Pirates should add a free agent or two, but waiting on the young arms is the best bet.

derekbellstutu
4 years 9 months ago

I’d LOVE to see the Bucs acquire Matt Garza, but the Rays are going to want a better return for him They need a closer and some financial flexibility. I could see Garza costing the Pirates one of Rudy Owens/Jeff Locke/Bryan Morris/Justin Wilson, Joel Hanrahan, and one or two lower minor leaguers, plus the Pirates could probably take Jason Bartlett and his $4M salary off the Rays’ hands.

coup
4 years 9 months ago

I’m really big on Wilson this year. He improved his velocity this past year and the fact he throws lefty will only help his chances in Pitt next season. Surprised he was omitted from that list.

Dave_Gershman
4 years 9 months ago

He, Rudy Owens, Bryan Morris, Jeff Locke, Jameson Taillon, Stetson Allie, and Luis Heredia.

Most teams don’t have 2 top pitching prospects.

TheLastPirateFan
4 years 9 months ago

Good stuff, as always from Neal. I would hope that they are able to get Jorge or Jeff Francis at a reasonable price. Also, they should trade Doumit if they get a good enough return. Locking up Cutch this offseason may be a bit premature because he isn’t really proven yet as a big league star, but of course if that’s what he becomes this season, then his price tag may skyrocket, so it’s a risk either way.

SteelCityResident13
4 years 9 months ago

This is simple, package Doumit and possibly Jones for a top of rotation pitcher and prospect(s)
Sign Adam LaRoche for 1b – 2 year deal.
Lambo in RF – hopefully, still not sold.

Only trouble will be the dominant left handed lineup….

cutch
tabata
walker
alvarez
laroche
snyder
lambo
cedeno
P

Ian_Smell
4 years 9 months ago

I think I’d have to stop being a Pirate fan if they brought back Adam LaRoche.

SteelCityResident13
4 years 9 months ago

Could help the right side of the infield defensively (MUCH better than Jones). Has the same batting potential as Jones (Well, you never know with either of them).

TheLastPirateFan
4 years 9 months ago

I completely agree with you, I wouldn’t mind seeing the Laroche Bros Reunion either…it adds to the fun, my fam and friends would go down to the games when they both started and compete against each other in “the laroche challenge,” we would bet on the combined number of laroche strikeouts in the game haha

TheLastPirateFan
4 years 9 months ago

I completely agree with you, I wouldn’t mind seeing the Laroche Bros Reunion either…it adds to the fun, my fam and friends would go down to the games when they both started and compete against each other in “the laroche challenge,” we would bet on the combined number of laroche strikeouts in the game haha

bucs_lose_again
4 years 9 months ago

You forgot to mention where you get incriminating photos of the GM you purpose that trade to. You barely get salary relief for a Doumit/Jones package, let alone anything useful.

SteelCityResident13
4 years 9 months ago

Doumit is due about 5 mill. Jones is under a mill. MULTIPLE TEAMS can handle that no problem. So, its not my job to find the team but they are def. out there and I guarantee we can get a solid arm in return for those two players. dont be surprised if it does happen but I dont see it happening. Neal isnt creative enough for this type of deal. Guess what though, the Rays could use these two guys and they have the pitching depth to counter the deal.

derekbellstutu
4 years 9 months ago

I can see Ned Colletti and the Dodgers taking Ryan Doumit and Garrett Jones and giving the Pirates a decent exchange (Matt Kemp and James Loney? :), but no other team is going to give the Bucs anything halfway decent for those two.

Lambo won’t be ready for for the bigs until September 2011 or spring 2012.

SteelCityResident13
4 years 9 months ago

We would never get Kemp and Loney for those two. Kemp isnt worth it, he will demand far too much in salary in years to come.

4 years 9 months ago

Jones almost has negative value at this point, I still say he gets moved but he isn’t going to be a part of anything major.

derekbellstutu
4 years 9 months ago

Did you expect the Pirates to get James McDonald and Andrew Lambo for Octavio Dotel? With Ned Colletti, anything is possible!

bucs_lose_again
4 years 9 months ago

Kemp isn’t worth Doumit and Jones? What planet do you live on?

SteelCityResident13
4 years 9 months ago

We would never get Kemp and Loney for those two. Kemp isnt worth it, he will demand far too much in salary in years to come.

Tacho Bill
4 years 9 months ago

There is no way LaWiff is coming back to Pittsburgh.

4 years 9 months ago

an improved defense will help the pirates rotation more than signing dlr will (although improving the defense AND signing dlr would help too!)