Quick Hits: LaPorta, Pirates, Nishioka, Tigers

Saturday afternoon linkage..

  • Once the key component in the deat that sent CC Sabathia to the Brewers, Indians slugger Matt LaPorta is eager to regain his old form in 2011, writes Jordan Bastian of MLB.com.
  • The Pirates need to increase their revenue if they hope to bring their payroll to around $70-$80MM, despite the perception of some, writes Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
  • Twins manager Rod Gardenhire says that Japanese import Tsuyoski Nishioka will play at second base this season, tweets Joe Christensen of the Star Tribune.
  • The Tigers' current approach to building their rotation stands out from the rest, writes Ben Nicholson-Smith in a piece for Fangraphs.

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7 Comments on "Quick Hits: LaPorta, Pirates, Nishioka, Tigers"

4 years 5 months ago

The Pirates are in a tough situation, they can’t raise the payroll without an increase in attendance, and attendance won’t go up until they put a better product on the field. I really respect what they are trying to do, and Neal Huntington has done a good job stocking their farm system, but I think what needs to happen is management needs to take a leap of faith and put a little money into it to support the young core they have there now. Pittsburgh has good fans, and they WILL come if the team is competitive. I think they should see how their young guys develop this year, then go for it in 2012.

4 years 5 months ago

pittsburgh reported $145m in revenue in 2010. tampa bay reported $156m

the pirates don’t need to increase revenue. they need to stop doing it wrong

4 years 5 months ago

how are they doing it wrong? They made offers to Pavano and De la Rosa this offseason. Did you want them to break the bank on Cliff Lee or something? They have great prospects coming through their system. And their new manager has coached two world series teams who built through the Farm System and scouting.

How much revenue did Colorado make in 2010

4 years 5 months ago


i don’t disagree that they’re headed in a better direction at the moment than they’ve been in a long time. i’m saying that revenue & payroll are not the principal issues for them right now; they need to model themselves after successful organizations like the rays and (to a lesser extent) the marlins

4 years 5 months ago


Revenue and payroll should only be concerns once they’ve gotten past the major stages of rebuilding. There really aren’t a lot of players that they can “lock up” who are currently on the team–the only one they should be concerned with at all anytime soon is CF Andrew McCutchen. Giving him a long-term deal next offseason should be their first priority.

They’ll need further development of the Big 3 pitching prospects they acquired last year(Tallion, Allie, and Heredia) before they know what they have in any of them.

Alvarez has room to grow, but before any long term decisions are made regarding him, they need to go through with the 2011 season, including the draft. If they can draft and successfully sign Anthony Rendon, then they’ll be able to look down the road a bit further at possibly moving Alvarez to 1B(and hopefully he’s OK with that.) Alvarez will still be under the terms of his major league contract that he signed after being drafted, so I don’t think the Pirates will worry about locking him up at least until after 2012 or 2013, possibly(and really, they don’t have to worry about it either.) The only other young players currently on the team who may be there for the long haul are Neil Walker and Jose Tabata, and the Pirates have a few years during which they can see what they have in both of them before discussing a long-term deal(if it ever comes to that.)

They do need to set a goal of getting to .500. Saying that they’re trying to get there by 2012 would be good, even if it is a bit heady and perhaps unrealistic, since they only won 57 games last year. I do think they could realistically win 65-68 games this year, however, as some of the young players take significant steps forward, so perhaps getting to at least 74-76 wins in 2012 won’t be too heady. Still, I’m sure many Pirates’ fans would like to avoid the “20 straight losing seasons” mantra that will plague the franchise should they have a losing season in 2012(1993-2012).

I guess we’ll see what happens, but I think the next step(after hopefully improving both the major league performance and the organizational depth in 2011) will be to perhaps trade a few prospects for some young, cost-controlled major league talent that can lead the team to the next plateau of a .500 season. :)

4 years 5 months ago

They are willing to spend, but there is just not enough talent on the free agent market. They need at least 2 top tier starting pitchers before they can contend.

4 years 5 months ago

What the Pirates need more than anything is a new ownership group that’s willing to increase the payroll regardless of what the current and short-term attendance figures are. Give the fans of Pittsburgh a new owner that they can believe in and a .500 ballclub, and they’ll come back out in droves. Not overnight, necessarily, but they will.