Pirates Shopping Jose Tabata

With Spring Training's end drawing closer, the Pirates are shopping right fielder Jose Tabata and also willing to listen to offers on out-of-options reliever Vin Mazzaro, according to Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review (Twitter links).

Tabata, still just 25 years of age, is owed $11.75MM over the next three seasons and has a trio of club options on his deal ranging from $6.5MM to $8.5MM. Tabata will earn $3MM in 2014, $4MM in 2015, $4.5MM in 2016 and has a $250K buyout on his $6.5MM option for 2017.

Coming off a poor 2012 performance, he reversed his fortunes in 2013 by slashing a solid .282/.342/.429, but Tabata already runs far less often than he did in his first two seasons (three steals in 2013 versus 35 in his first two campaigns) and hasn't seen much power develop. Beyond that, he's been injury prone, having spent a combined 77 games on the shelf between his 2011 and 2013 DL stints. Tabata plays a fine left field but is miscast as a center fielder and doesn't have a prototypical right fielder's arm.

Tabata's time as a starter with the organization is likely running out anyhow, a top prospect Gregory Polanco is nearly ready for the bigs. The 22-year-old ranks as baseball's No. 10 prospect according to Baseball America and is ranked 13th and 24th by MLB.com and Baseball Prospectus, respectively. Though he's already been optioned to Triple-A to open the season, Polanco is coming off a 2013 campaign in which he batted .285/.356/.434 with 12 homers and 38 stolen bases and could be with the Pirates as soon as this summer. Alongside, Starling Marte and Andrew McCutchen, he could help give the Pirates one of the game's most exciting young outfields.

Mazzaro, 27, enjoyed a breakout campaign in his first season with Pittsburgh last year. The former A's hurler was dealt to the Royals in a trade for David DeJesus but entered 2013 with a career 5.22 ERA in 286 innings. The Pirates acquired him cheaply from Kansas City and were rewarded with 73 2/3 innings of a 2.81 ERA with 5.6 K/9, 2.6 BB/9 and a career-best 52.2 percent ground-ball rate.

Pittsburgh has a wealth of options in the bullpen, highlighted by All-Star closer Jason Grilli but also featuring Mark Melancon, Justin Wilson and Tony Watson. Biertempfel notes that Mazzaro appears to be the odd man out, and the team is therefore willing to move him, but his phrasing doesn't seem to be as strong regarding Mazzaro as it is in expressing Tabata's availability. Last night, ESPN's Buster Olney speculated that the Pirates, who lost catcher Chris Stewart for an extended period of time, could match up with the Yankees in a trade; New York could use some additional stability in the bullpen, while Pittsburgh could add some depth behind the plate and seek a better defensive backup than Tony Sanchez.


139 Responses to Pirates Shopping Jose Tabata Leave a Reply

  1. Michael A. Morrone 1 year ago

    The Pirates could match up with the Pirates in a trade?

    • StevePegues 1 year ago

      It saves on paperwork and transportation costs.

  2. Jordan Hall 1 year ago

    Tony Sanchez is a fine defensive backup. The Pirates want him getting every day at bats in AAA, though. He’ll be taking over the starting role next season when Martin leaves via FA.

    • connfyoozed . 1 year ago

      Really, the only thing the Pirates need at catcher is another veteran backstop to fill in while Stewart is hurt. In the next couple of weeks, there are going to be a lot of Miguel Olivo and Koyie Hill types floating around the Designated for Assignment nether-world. Finding a fill-in should not be an issue.

      • davbee 1 year ago

        If Miguel Olivo and Koyie Hill are the answers, you’re asking the wrong questions.

        • connfyoozed . 1 year ago

          I was only using them as examples because Olivo wanted out of wherever he is, and Hill just got traded. Believe me, I am not interested in either.

  3. jayson 1 year ago

    Mariners make way too much sense for Tabata.

    • Jake L 1 year ago

      Justin Smoak makes way too much sense for the Pirates…

      • John Kreese 1 year ago

        Agreed. Makes too much sense for both teams. Then SEA could make a move on Kendrys Morales. Morales/Hart/LoMo a three guy platoon for 1B/DH.

      • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

        Tabata for Smoak and Montero.

        • Jake L 1 year ago

          Tabata isn’t worth that much.

          • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

            Montero isn’t worth anything. He’s just a throw in because I’m sure Seattle would love to get rid of him.

          • Jake L 1 year ago

            but why would the Pirates want him??

          • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

            Why do they want Volquez?

          • Jake L 1 year ago

            Because they thought they could turn his career around (clearly they were wrong so far). Montero can’t play catcher, the NL doesn’t have a DH, and the Pirates don’t want him. Wouldn’t make any sense. Smoak does though!

          • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

            I don’t see anything wrong with the Pirates putting Montero at AAA and letting him get some 1B/DH time. Remember when the Pirates took Jeff Clement off Seattle’s hands?

          • Jake L 1 year ago

            Yea I can’t disagree with that but I still don’t see it happening. I didn’t realize he was just sent down to AAA already. Pirates would still have to give the Mariners more than just Tabata.

          • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

            Jared Hughes

          • Jake L 1 year ago

            Hughes has options left in AAA. It would be Mazzaro, Morris, or Gomez who are out of options.

          • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

            I can’t see the Pirates giving up one of those relievers ALONG with Tabata. Not to acquire Smoak. They would be better off making two separate deals.

          • Jake L 1 year ago

            Why not? They can’t keep all 3 of those relievers. Not enough room on the roster. Morris is the best out of those 3. Gomez and Mazzaro are coming off career years at their peak value and relievers are expendable. Especially since they have guys like Pimentel, Welker, and Hughes who can fill in for potential injuries.

          • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

            Quite frankly, I don’t think Smoak is good enough.

          • Todd Smith 1 year ago

            Pimentel is out of options as well.

          • formerdraftpick 1 year ago

            Because they like guys who can’t hit.

        • charles 1 year ago

          tabata for smoak and a reliever of some kind

          • Jake L 1 year ago

            Pirates are trying to get rid of RPs not trade for them. Tabata for Smoak + Prospect makes the most sense.

          • charles 1 year ago

            your right. i dont know the pirates much. we will give you morrison and chris taylor

          • davbee 1 year ago

            Smoak has just been named the starting first baseman in Seattle. They’re not going to trade him anytime soon.

        • Patrick the Pragmatist 1 year ago

          Why would the M’s need two guys to get Tabata? He is okay but not a star or even close yet.

      • paulinpittsburgh 1 year ago

        Acquiring Smoak would be a brilliant move on the part of the Pirates as he could almost certainly take over full time and provide above league average offense at first for several years while keeping cost down to boot.

        As you say though, way to much sense for them to actually pull off.

    • Edgar4evar 1 year ago

      Nope.
      Tabata does not hit lefties well. He’s right handed, but the reason the M’s need a right-handed outfielder is for hitting against left-handed pitching. Tabata doesn’t fit that bill.

      • vtadave 1 year ago

        Over the last three years, Tabata has hit lefties (.758 OPS) better than righties (.701 OPS). Not sure what I’m missing here.

        • Edgar4evar 1 year ago

          I was looking at wRC+ where for his career he’s 104 vs. lefties and 103 vs. righties, meaning he has no real split and is only slightly above average against lefties. Last season he was actually significantly worse against lefties with a 103/122 split.

          Even at that he’d be one of four Mariners who are above-average against left handed pitching. If all he costs is Smoak or Morrison then it wouldn’t be the worst deal ever.

  4. daveineg 1 year ago

    Mazzaro isn’t likely to repeat his 2013. Tabata is an ideal 4th OF. Nice player but without the power to start for most teams in a corner OF spot. He’s having tough spring but I’m surprised the Pirates would give up on him now based on that.

    • Seamaholic 1 year ago

      Makes too much $$. Pirates are scraping for pennies.

      • vtadave 1 year ago

        Maybe, but he just isn’t that good and they have other, cheaper options. May as well explore a deal.

      • letsgobucs 1 year ago

        Tabata’s contract is VERY team friendly. Money isn’t the issue, the Pirates are simply trying to deal from strength – RP and corner OF. They have Travis Snyder to fill in RF until June when Gregory Polanco comes up. The Pirates have a bevy of RP too – bullpen of Grilli/Watson/Wilson/Hughes/Pimental/Gomez/Melancon fills all spots with Mazzaro, Morris as odd men out. Tabata is a guy who just needs a change of scenery, he has all the tools. I think he would flourish on another club.

        • arthur3 1 year ago

          Morris has been “lights out” this spring. I do not see him as the “odd man out”.

  5. JacksTigers 1 year ago

    Tabata hits righties better than lefties. Could be an option for Detroit.

    • That’s the best fit I can think of right now. Platooned with Rajai?

      • EightMileCats 1 year ago

        Makes sense. Allow Tabata to be the strong side of the platoon til Dirks comes back. Then transition Tabata to the bench role.
        It’d also allow the Tigers to go with Suarez or Perez at SS and not worry so much about the drop off in offensive production at 2 spots.

  6. terry 1 year ago

    He be a perfect fit for the bluejays try him at second and has a pretty reasonable price tag

    • …second base? Tabata is an outfielder. No IF experience in the Bigs. Probably shouldn’t just put him there because he’ll have nine more hits than Ryan Going.

    • daveineg 1 year ago

      If the Jays are looking for 2B help, they should call Brewers and inquire about Weeks. Brewers would be willing to pay significant portion of his salary.

    • Edgar4evar 1 year ago

      The Jays and Mariners should work out a deal for Franklin. He’s the best young second baseman on the market right now. The fact that we haven’t heard rumblings makes me think the Jays don’t have what the M’s are looking for, though.

    • formerdraftpick 1 year ago

      I always thought he would have been a better infielder. Not like he would have been the first player ever to make the transition. I would love to see the Pirates switch prospect Jeff Roy to 2B. I don’t think he’ll make it as an outfielder in this organization. A middle infielder…quite possibly.

  7. charles 1 year ago

    go and get him mariners whatcha waiting for

    • WhoKilledTheRallyMonkey 1 year ago

      They are waiting to realize that Hart and LoMo cant play the OF…. Im sure they’ll figure it out eventually.

      • jayson 1 year ago

        Don’t sound so confident about that.

        • WhoKilledTheRallyMonkey 1 year ago

          They will realize it by May when they are on the DL

          • jayson 1 year ago

            Hey LoMo might stay healthy till mid June if we DH him every day!

  8. Jacob Holton 1 year ago

    The Tigers could be a suitor for him this year. It’d be good especially if they lose Hunter next season.

  9. SportsLover 1 year ago

    Tabata for Franklin?

    • Jacob Holton 1 year ago

      You’d have to give them something else for Franklin.

      • Jake L 1 year ago

        A lot more than Tabata…

        • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

          Tabata and Jeff Locke

        • SportsLover 1 year ago

          Why? Franklin hit only .225.

          • RaysfaninMN 1 year ago

            By that logic, Trout could have been had for peanuts after only hitting .220 in 2011.
            Tabata:
            1. Costs more $$$
            2. Plays a position that requires more offensive production
            3. Shows signs of declining speed
            Teams are showing more and more preference towards young, controllable talent with upside. Tabata has some of that, Franklin has more.

          • SportsLover 1 year ago

            And with THAT logic, you can trade for the entire Met offense for a king’s ransom, since their hitters have low averages as well. I guess this value on low averages is a new thing I was not aware of…so sorry.

          • RaysfaninMN 1 year ago

            I do not even know how to respond to that.

        • Jacob Holton 1 year ago

          Not a lot more, but maybe something minor. Tabata would be in the deal, but that would mean either Barmes or Mercer goes then.

        • Bronx Bombers 1 year ago

          Considering Tabata seems offensively superior why so?

          • The_Unnatural 1 year ago

            1. Franklin has a very high ceiling and has 6 years of control left
            2. Tabata plays corner outfield and Franklin plays middle infield.

    • James 1 year ago

      I would be livid as an M’s fan if they did that trade, Tabata for Franklin. I’d want nothing to do with Tabata. The M’s OF is one big logjam and adding Tabata to the mix would not solve anything as he is not distinguishably better than what they have now.

    • letsgobucs 1 year ago

      No way Seattle would give up Franklin – or Smoak for that matter – straight up for Tabata. I’m a Pirates fan and I’m willing to admit that.

  10. Jake L 1 year ago

    Either I am under-appreciating Tabata or the the rest of the MLB fans are mistaken about how bad Tabata really is. A majority of the time Tabata is painful to watch play baseball.

    • Joe W. 1 year ago

      You are just remembering ’11 and ’12 which where down right bad. ’10 and ’13 where fair. People are also overvaluing players like Smoak

      • Jake L 1 year ago

        Still he isn’t an everyday outfielder. He was a solid 4th OF and injury replacement but he isn’t an everyday guy in my opinion.

        • Joe W. 1 year ago

          yeah I can see him being an everyday player in the next year or two…. assuming he doesn’t regress… i would like to give’m one more season to grow into the ‘big boy’ shoes but with Polanco.. he’ll end up just getting in the way. I still .282 isn’t bad especially if he can round off the rest of the game some.

        • Joe W. 1 year ago

          On some teams, with continued improvement he surely could be an everyday player.. but there is still a question IF he will continue improving or regress back .. if he had a more team friendly contract i would love to keep him around in case Palonco doesn’t put on a show in the second half.

  11. Ron Loreski 1 year ago

    Jose Tabata and Vin Mazarro for Mike Carp.

    • TL 1 year ago

      Maybe Carp + Lavarnway?

      • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

        Lavarnway doesn’t really fit with the Pirates long-term.

        • TL 1 year ago

          Right. I was thinking more as AAA depth with some small upside.

    • raffish 1 year ago

      You’d pay more for Carp than Smoak? Smoak has been less than stellar, but Carp is a 25th man. He had success over 200 at-bats because the Sox platooned him in a good hitters stadium. He has no defensive position, either. At least one can hope Smoak will take a small step forward, especially outside of Safeco. He could OPS .800+ with good defense in another park.

      • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

        I would, yes. PNC Park has a short RF porch, which should maximize Carp’s power. And there’s no way Carp is a worse defender at 1B than Garrett Jones. I’m just not a believer in Smoak.

    • connfyoozed . 1 year ago

      I can see that deal, Ron…with perhaps a catcher thrown in, although I don’t think it would net them Lavarnway.

    • Tko11 1 year ago

      Sox have nowhere to put Tabata…

      • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

        Without Carp, yes they do. Plus Gomes and Sizemore aren’t signed past 2014.

        • Tko11 1 year ago

          They still have Carp…and there will be better options than Tabata in the future. For this year, Tabata has a 2.2 WAR in 402 career games. Any in house option would be just as good if they really needed and OF.

          • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

            “Jose Tabata and Vin Mazarro for Mike Carp”

            The Pirates would be getting Carp bro

  12. Mets make a lot if sense too

    • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

      Mets are interesting. How about Tabata, Morris, and Josh Harrison for Daniel Murphy. Murphy platoons with Sanchez at 1B while backing up Walker at 2B.

      • Rather get someone with pop

        • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

          Daniel Murphy had 40 and 38 doubles the last two seasons respectively. He is a .290 career hitter, and he also stole 23 bases last season. Who wouldn’t like to add those numbers to the Pirates offense? Not to mention he adds versatility, being able to play 1B, 2B, 3B, and OF. I think he would be a great fit with the Pirates.

          • OriginalHitman 1 year ago

            “Not to mention he adds versatility, being able to play 1B, 2B, 3B, and OF”

            Trust me, you don’t wanna see Murph in the OF.

          • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

            We really wouldn’t need him in the OF. Just trying to strengthen my point.

          • OriginalHitman 1 year ago

            I know, just saying.

            I admire the Pirates OF depth (even though I like our own configuration coming together with Lagares being in CF & Puello coming soon to patrol RF) and I wish we could produce a guy like McCutchen or Polanco, although I’m very curious about our recent draftee Ivan Wilson. Got a good feeling about him even though he looks to be a long ways away.

    • EightMileCats 1 year ago

      Could base something around Tabata for Ike. (note, base… I’m sure there’d be more moving pieces)
      Give the Pirates a 1b… and if the Pirates can fix him, they’d have a solid 1b with power

  13. Jacob Holton 1 year ago

    Tabata, Bryan Morris, Phil Irwin, and Andy Oliver, for Smoak, Charlie Furbush. Pirates let Snider take over in right for a little until Polanco gets called up. Smoak can take over at first with Sanchez batting against lefties every once in a while. Too late to have Sanchez learn another position but maybe RF. Furbush could battle it out with Wilson or Watson. Loser gets sent down or traded for top tier starter. Tabata helps in Seattle, maybe LF or RF. Bryan Morris is a minor upgrade to the bullpen. Oliver and Irwin battle out for rotation spot in the wake of Iwakuma and Walker injury.

    • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

      I don’t see the Pirates taking on another LH reliever. Nor to the Pirates need to trade for a top tier starter.

    • Joe W. 1 year ago

      smoak maybe, a bit expensive for his offensive abilities IMO. then again one could say the same about Jose.

      Furbush and the rest i really doubt it not unless they plan on flipping him.

  14. Joe W. 1 year ago

    I’m probably one of the few that does not want to give in on Jose especially the way he played last year (hard), but does make sense to see what you could get for him when you got someone like Polanco coming up in the summer and Snider having a good spring costing a third of what Jose does. Maybe a change of City will really spark him?

    There is just no place for Vin, he did great last year and would like to keep him but it is what it is.

  15. Bertin Lefkovic 1 year ago

    I would sooner trade Austin Romine for Tony Watson or Justin Wilson than Vin Mazzaro. If necessary, I’ll take Tabata as well for Zoilo Almonte, Tyler Austin, Slade Heathcott, or Mason Williams.

    • MB923 1 year ago

      I can’t picture the Yankees giving up any of them for Tabata. MAYBE Almonte. But I also don’t see the point of them getting Tabata when they already have 1 OFer locked up for the next 5 years and another for the next 7 years. Better of keeping or trading 1 or more of those guys for a pitcher of IFer, not another OFer (who should not be an everyday OFer either)

      • Bertin Lefkovic 1 year ago

        I wasn’t proposing Almonte or one of the others straight-up for Tabata, but instead as a sweetener to be able to swap Romine for one of the Pirates’ lefty relievers. Tabata could be a productive 4th or 5th outfielder for the Yankees.

    • WhoKilledTheRallyMonkey 1 year ago

      NYY does not need any more MLB ready OF’ers and PIT is not trying to trade Tabata for another OF (For example Almonte, Tyler Austin, Slade Heathcott, or Mason Williams) they want a catcher. Hence the discussion of a Mazzaro for catcher trade.

    • connfyoozed . 1 year ago

      Pirates don’t seem to have much interest in dealing either Wilson or Watson, and I don’t blame them. The pitchers out of options who could get dealt are Mazzaro, Jeanmar Gomez, Bryan Morris, and Andy Oliver. Of those, Mazzaro seems the most likely to leave.

  16. Dj044 1 year ago

    Darin Ruf for Tabata + money?

    • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

      That’s actually not a bad deal. Even though Ruf is a RH batter, he hits RHP better.

    • GrilledCheese39 1 year ago

      That is really weird I was about to say that…

  17. David Kowalski 1 year ago

    Oakland is another possible trade partner for the Pirates. They have an excess of catchers with John Jaso being listed as third on the depth chart. Tabata might not be the best fit as they already have a fourth outfielder in Craig Gentry but a reliever or a prospect, especially a starting pitcher would be good. Ideally, the A’s would like a fifth starter type for now but at this point there aren’t many possibilities. Besides a catcher they could also deal Albert Callaspo.

    The Yankees might want Callaspo and could give up Pineda although Billy Beane would probably start with asking for both Pineda and say Adam Warren. A three way deal with the Yankees getting Callaspo and the Pirates a catcher would make good sense.

    • Federal League 1 year ago

      Very wishful thinking on the Callaspo trade. Cashman isn’t touching that with a ten foot pole.

      • David Kowalski 1 year ago

        Youu are probably right. But the Yankees need to replacements this year at both second base and third base and Callaspo fits into the mix at either position. I can’t think of another trade partner for Callaspo. When I said the Yankees “might want” Callaspo, that was exactly the case. Callaspo is exactly the type of veteran that Cashman has used to fill in recently. Some of them work and some don’t.

        • Federal League 1 year ago

          The Yankees already signed those replacements as free agents. I think they feel comfortable letting the season play out for a month or two before they start trading away quality pitching depth.

  18. Red_Line_9 1 year ago

    Bucs listening to offers on “Big Inn” Vin Mazarro? Are they using a seismograph?

    • Nathan Boley 1 year ago

      Mazzaro was pretty lights out last year. He gets made fun of because of that horrific inning in KC but he’s been a solid reliever otherwise.

      • Red_Line_9 1 year ago

        I know what your saying…but he’s not what I’d call a solid reliever…not even based on his 2013. He had more potential with Oak and KC..and couldn’t hold an MLB role in any form. But…shoe on the other foot… I’d defend him same as you.

  19. Damon Bowman 1 year ago

    Depending on what the Pirates receive in exchange, it is possible that some team gets a steal in Tabata. He has shown some talent and is still young at 25 years old. The Pirates could be overlooking that Tabata is simply a late-bloomer. He showed a solid batting eye at every minor league stop in the Yankee and Pirate farm systems. He was never going to be a 25 HR type of hitter, but could be a top of the order table-setter if put with the right hitting coach. I’d be more than happy to see the O’s take a flyer on him if they could stick him at triple-A Norfolk for the year while they re-shape him.

    • Federal League 1 year ago

      Outside of 2012, he’s produced at a pretty consistent level. It’s likely that we’ve already seen what kind of player he is, though I certainly believe he could squeeze more SLG out of his line.

    • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

      Do you really think he’s 25 years old? Look what has happened to his body (and speed) the last few years. I think Tabata is actually close to 30, which would explain his skillset.

      • Federal League 1 year ago

        His stolen base ability certainly cratered, but he still showed an ability to leg out triples at a pretty good clip.

      • Damon Bowman 1 year ago

        That’s not a crazy suggestion and it’s something I hadn’t considered. However, if his age is accurate the Pirates are bailing out early on a guy who was a .290 hitter in the minors over a number of seasons.

        • Ron Loreski 1 year ago

          The Pirates have enough OF depth that they can afford to take that gamble with Tabata if it makes this team better. Between Snider, Decker, and Dickerson, they should be able to man RF until the impending arrival of Polanco. Not to mention Lambo also becomes a RF option if the Pirates can acquire a 1B.

      • Red_Line_9 1 year ago

        I thought the same thing about age when I saw Albert Pujols playing a few days ago. I hadn’t seen him in awhile. He’s looking old and has gotten heavy. Wow is that deal going to look ugly for the Angels

      • Eric 1 year ago

        That is wild speculation. You have no good evidence to back up your claim.

        • Nathan Boley 1 year ago

          It isn’t all that crazy. The Pirates have already acknowledged Tabata is likely older than he said he was when they signed him.

          • guest_54 1 year ago

            That’s interesting considering that he was signed as an amateur free agent by the Yankees and not the Pirates.

  20. Bob Bunker 1 year ago

    If he can play CF, might be a good player to trade Carp for. Or maybe Lavarnway + some others.

    • domaug 1 year ago

      i believe he can play CF. more experience in the corner OF spots though.

    • connfyoozed . 1 year ago

      He is much better in the corners than he is in CF, but he still might interest Boston nonetheless.

      • Tko11 1 year ago

        Why would Boston need him when they have too many outfielders already? Nava, Gomes, Carp, Victorino, Sizemore, Bradley, Brentz

  21. jwsox 1 year ago

    Tabata for alexi Ramirez and cash? Then sox can then flip de Aza or vicedio for a catcher. I know Tabata has his down side but from a whitesox perspective I would rather go with age and upside over de Aza anyway

    • Todd Smith 1 year ago

      Can’t think of any reason why the Pirates would want Alexi Ramirez.

  22. domaug 1 year ago

    the Pirates shouldn’t trade Tabata for a catcher. that would be a mistake even with Stewart out long-term. Tony Sanchez has to get his feet wet a little more in the big leagues if he’s going to amount to anything. he’s entering his prime years.

  23. Brian Van Horn 1 year ago

    Tabata for Ike Davis. That way we get back another Garrett Jones and it will put an exclamation point on the Pirates moves before opening day.

    • Nathan Boley 1 year ago

      Ike is better than GI at this point. He has more upside.

  24. People should understand that Jose Tabata no longer has clemente on his chest, traitor

  25. GrilledCheese39 1 year ago

    Tabata for Darin Ruf, Mazzaro for Juan Francisco. Gaby and Francisco platoon, Ruf mans RF until Polanco arrives in June, and if Gaby and Francisco struggle, an upgrade could be looked for at the trade deadline. As for a backup catcher, none of the Yankees excite me… Perhaps Hank Conger of the Angels or John Jaso of the Athletics would be good fits.

    • Damon Bowman 1 year ago

      If Ruben Amaro thought he had a place for Tabata he’d probably jump on that deal. For some reason it appears that Amaro has no use for Ruf and would rather look elsewhere for a 4th outfielder and bench power — even if Tabata doesn’t provide that.

  26. arthur3 1 year ago

    In recent years, the Pirates have given away talented major league outfielders for virtually nothing when they did not perform to management expectations quickly enough. Brandon Moss and Jose Bautista ( and possibly Nate McClouth) come to mind. Jose Tabata appears to fit that same player mold- a whirlwind of potential not yet realized. Here’s hoping that the Pirates do not repeat this same lunacy with Tabata.

    • bucsws2014 1 year ago

      I was a big fan of Moss, but there was no way the Bucs could wait for him. It took another two years for Moss to click and the Bucs had no room for that kind of project. Bautista took a year plus to click in Toronto. The problem with Bautista was that he was serviceable at 3b while with the Bucs and was replaced with a stiff, so there was no urgent need to move him. McLouth netted Morton and Locke (and Gorkys, who was converted to Gaby Sanchez) so the mere suggestion of giving Nate away for “virtually nothing” is absurd.

      • arthur3 1 year ago

        I was referring to McClouth’s second go-round with the Pirates. He was signed by the Pirates and played a total of 34 games and just 62 plate appearances before being DFA’ d. He moved on to Baltimore, and he has proven to be a decent player for the O’s. Baltimore was given a major league caliber starting outfielder by the Pirates for nothing. And yes, that is absurd.

        • Todd Smith 1 year ago

          McLouth was hitting .140 with a .385 OPS as their 4th outfielder when they designated him. He was put on waivers, and nobody claimed him. He was released and signed as a free agent by Baltimore. There was absolutely zero trade value there.

  27. Smrtbusnisman04 1 year ago

    If the Pirates trade away Tabata, who will play RF? Does this mean Travis Snider starts every game until Polanco gets called up?

    • connfyoozed . 1 year ago

      Snider gets a lot of the work, with maybe some Chris Dickerson or Jaff Decker thrown in. The Bucs are really raving about how much better Snider looks this year. He had a toe injury last year that screwed up his swing, and he apparently dropped some weight this year. Plus, if Andrew Lambo fails to take the half of the 1B platoon, and it looks like he might fail, Lambo could see OF time instead.

  28. Smrtbusnisman04 1 year ago

    I like Huntington, but I think the Tabata extension is his worst move as Pirates GM (Im aware that most will say trading Jose Batista)Tabata’ s play in 2011 was very subpar and he has put on a ton of weight since his 2010 debut. Besides that, they gave it out before McCutchen’ s extension, who did earn his extension.

    • bucsws2014 1 year ago

      Given the value of one WAR, it’s still a positive contract.

      Tabata certainly earned the ire of Bucs fans with his 2012 season – out of shape, lack of hustle, seemingly in another world out in RF, etc. But he turned that around in 2013. I don’t know if he’ll improve as an everyday OF, but he’s very useful in his current role. Good bench bat. Good hit-and-run guy. Still some speed. Adequate arm for RF. Solid gap (but not over-the-wall) power.

      I think there’s a market for the guy. There are worse players currently starting for a number of teams.

      Based on ST rumors, Hurdle seems to want to keep Dickerson on the club and he makes minimum. So Tabata is expendable. A package with Mazzaro (or Gomez, who can be a 5th starter) for a LH 1b is the target.

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