Trade Candidate: Erik Bedard

Uspw_6215474Few could have foreseen Erik Bedard's relatively disappointing career arc after his brilliant breakout campaign as an Oriole in 2007. The left-hander was worth 5.4 WAR that year, striking out more than a batter per inning, and he finally seemed to have harnessed his nasty raw stuff in a way that would translate to a stretch of dominance.

But the cruel reality of injuries intervened in literally every season since then, reducing Bedard to that frustrating type of player who is effective during his fleeting stretches of relative health. Now with the Pirates after quietly signing a one-year contract with them as a free agent this offseason, Bedard is looking like a strong in-season trade candidate — with that all too familiar caveat: if he can stay healthy.

Such a trade would not be new territory for Bedard. Last season, the Red Sox acquired the southpaw from the Mariners in an interesting three-way swap that netted Seattle a decent prospect in outfielder Trayvon Robinson. Even within the context of that trade, Bedard showed his best and worse: He turned in several strong second-half outings for the Red Sox, but he also missed roughly three starts due to various injuries during the team's brutal September collapse. So, the upside is there, but so is the risk.

Bedard has gotten off to a decent start this season (he struck out nine in five innings during his start today), and more importantly, he's been healthy. If he can continue to take the hill every fifth day over the next month, Bucs GM Neal Huntington would be wise to start phoning starting-needy contenders, especially considering that Bedard's modest $4.5MM salary shouldn't be a deterrent for most suitors. The Yankees, for one, might fit that bill, depending upon how they handle their beleaguered rotation in the coming weeks.

Even if Bedard were to yield a medium or low probability prospect with a high upside — a la Robinson — it might be worth it for the rebuilding Pirates to pull the trigger during another season that surely won't end in a postseason berth.


30 Responses to Trade Candidate: Erik Bedard Leave a Reply

  1. MaineSox 3 years ago

    I wonder if the Red Sox would be a good fit 0_o

    • johnsilver 3 years ago

       HAHA. Sure Maine… Boston can give Seattle Josh Fields back for him. Maybe even Andrew Miller to sweeten the pot.

    • Braves? D-Backs? Maybe. The Red Sox have quite enough borderline starters. And if I recall correctly, Bedard Experiment I didn’t produce anything better than Doubront, Miller, etc.

      • MaineSox 3 years ago

        I was being sarcastic because they traded for him last year, but Bedard is more than a borderline starter.  He’s been very good (and very injured) his whole career, and he was actually arguably their best pitcher down the stretch last year.

  2. NO WAY…everyone loves what he’s been bringing to the table in Pittsburgh so far and how solid he’s been pitching this season. its not evident by his 1-4 record, but the 4 losses were all great starts and he got barely any run support those games. top 10 in the NL in K’s (27 total K’s) and a 2.48 era is not considered “decent” in my opinion. dont be hating on the fact that the Pirates rotation is one of the best in baseball right now and automatically say they are trade pieces

    • So you suggest letting him walk and getting nothing in return for him? If he has a good and healthy season hes not going to be a Pirate in 2013. 

      • johnsilver 3 years ago

        “If he has a good and healthy season”

        Something he has not been for 5 years.

    • Jason_F 3 years ago

      He’s a trade piece not because people are “hating,” rather because it is the smart thing to do. As long as they are not in the hunt come July or so and Bedard is pitching well, it would behoove the Pirates not to try and pick up a decent prospect for him. You need to get realistic about your team and the fact that they aren’t going to be making any noise this year with a team posting sub-600 ops. They are pitching great, but their starters numbers look so good mostly due to a flukishly low HR rate.

      • remember, last years Pirate team was pretty much exactly like this years team at this point of the season…..solid starting pitching, solid bullpen, bad hitting with RISP, not scoring many runs, winning via small ball. last years team was 3 games under for April and even for May, so they were 3 games under .500 at the end of May. they didnt start turning it up til mid June when they started getting some attention nationwide. theres SO MUCH time left in the season its rediculous to even start critiquing and predicting the season from not even one month of the season

        • Jason_F 3 years ago

          So, is your point to inform me that they will be just as bad as last year’s 18 games under .500 version of themselves? If they had Bedard last season, they would have traded him at the deadline, just like they probably will this season. That is, if he can stay healthy.

          • monkeyking42 3 years ago

            They were buyers at last year’s trade deadline…

  3. TheElectricDreamMachine 3 years ago

    I suppose there’s always the off chance the Pirates’ offense could not suck, at which point they could be legitimate contenders.  Assuming the pitching somehow continues to be good.

  4. Mo_GOAT 3 years ago

    Get him Cashman, anything is better than Freddy Garcia.

    • could have gotten him this offseason instead of trading away great young talent and power in Montero by getting Pineda and him screwing up him arm (even though I like Pineda)…and by the way thanks for AJ Burnett too. but Bedard is a Bucco now and everyone else could have had him

  5. Dave Pierce 3 years ago

    Waaaaaaay too early to be closing the books on the Pirates in that NL Central. Yes, even the Pirates.

  6. Giraffe Monsoon 3 years ago

    Yes, the Pirates do have som subpar hitters in their line-up, but in that central division, their pitching could allow them to contend. And their hitting is not as bad as it’s been, so the will probably eventually even out hitting-wise.

    It’s also only a matter of months, perhaps weeks before hitting prospect Starling Marte comes up and sends power-less corner outfielder Jose Tabata to the bench permanently. That right there will take care of two hitting problems alone.

  7. Erik Bedard has been inhuman for me in MLB 2K12.

    Was playing as the… shoot, I forget, I think the Twins (because I hate myself) and I traded for him in May. He ended up winning the Cy Young with a 1.38 ERA in 220 innings that year.

  8. bucsws2014 3 years ago

    The Bucs should listen to a package from BOS or TOR that includes Lavarnay or d’Arnaud because Pgh’s catching situation is horrid. But other than that, why not try to sign Bedard to a 3-year deal? Cole isn’t arriving till 2014. AJ will be done after 2013. The AAA guys they have now are not ace material. Once Marte comes up Bucs are a SS and C away from contending. Also need a long-term 1b option, but the Jones/McGehee platoon is serviceable for now.

    • garettf 3 years ago

      D’Arnaud is a top 10 prospect, cmon now man. Bedard will never fetch that return again.

      • bucsws2014 3 years ago

        Package is the operative word. Sox have other needs, so do Bucs. Even top 10 prospects are traded. Could still be a win-win for both clubs.

    • people have discussed an idea of trading Hanrahan to the Red Sox for one of Lavarnway or Middlebrooks in a package. because being an elite closer, Hanrahan would be commanding one of them in return…Huntington would not doubt ask for one of those two guys

      • bucsws2014 3 years ago

        Bucs don’t need Middlebrooks anymore. Pedro has arisen.
        But they do desperately need a catcher. Hanny, Bedard, doesn’t matter who goes to get one.

  9. LukeHenne76 3 years ago

    Hey, he has brought good stuff to the club. Although his record is 1-4, he has an ERA under 3. He doesn’t get any run support. He had 9 strikeouts last night, that’s pretty good for a Pirates pitcher, and believe me, I would know

  10. Todd Smith 3 years ago

    Pirates are going to be in a tough position this year around the deadline, much like last year – I believe.  Not so sure they need to be sellers this year.  They’ve had the toughest schedule in the National League in April facing Philly, LA, SF, Arizona, St Louis, Colorado and Atlanta, and they are still hanging right in there.  Once the schedule breaks in their favor a bit more, I think this could be a dangerous team this year – especially with Pedro starting to heat up at the plate lately.

    • LukeHenne76 3 years ago

      Thank you….I try to tell everybody that but no one cares to listen. We should be an explosive team once the schedule slows down and we quit playing small ball

  11. timozbuck 3 years ago

    This organization needs power in the worst way…

  12. Josh Conn 3 years ago

    If someone offers you the moon… (say, a good catching prospect and a power bat), then I say go for it.  If not, keep him.  The Pirates have just as much chance to be a contender as a pretender this year.  No one in the NL Central is all that great, and the Pirates might actually have the best pitching of any of them.

  13. pirateswillwinin2013 3 years ago

      “it might be worth it for the rebuilding Pirates to pull the trigger
    during another season that surely won’t end in a postseason berth.”

    Not necessarily True if Pedro stays hot the whole year

  14. pirateswillwinin2013 3 years ago

    I don’t get it either, Pirates pitching staff is probably the best in the whole division, but yet they considered to not being able to win?

  15. “Lastly I would not place hope in a Pirates prospect doing anything ever. They consistently fail to launch talent.”……………have you heard about the McCutchen, Walker, and Presley fellows? all Pirate draft picks and have been solid Major Leaguers. i would even consider Morton and James McDonald as Pirate Prospects since they got them via trade when they werent established Major Leaguers yet (Morton with ATL, JMac with Dodgers)

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