The Pirates aren’t exactly playing inspired ball at 28-30, but they remain in the hunt in a densely packed NL Central. GM Neal Huntingon indicated that he’s on the look for acquisitions in an interview with 93.7 FM The Fan (as covered by Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette).
The club has had a number of tough injury breaks, though that’s true of plenty of other teams as well. But missing some notable roster pieces has only left Huntington feeling more determined. He says the “continued fight in this club is something to appreciate and love.”
While the Bucs are a notoriously light-spending outfit, Huntington isn’t just counting on getting a boost from already-paid-for, rehabbing players such as Corey Dickerson, Jung Ho Kang, Jameson Taillon, and Keone Kela. The long-time front office leader isn’t necessarily saying the pocketbook or farm system will be opened wide to make additions, but does say he’s “got to find a way to get some reinforcements here.”
Unsurprisingly, pitching is the focus. While the Pirates have a few position players nearing returns, the group of hurlers has longer to wait for its own injured assets to make it back to the roster. Collectively, the Bucs have an ugly 6.17 ERA over the past thirty days.
It’d obviously be nice to score a high-end starter, though that isn’t necessarily in the cards. The focus now is on smaller game. Huntington highlights the middle relief corps, saying he has not “done a good job in getting the right guys at the right times from the right spots.” Picking up reasonably interesting, potential bounceback relievers in the middle of the season is something the Pirates have pulled off in the past, so we can safely anticipate some efforts in that regard.
That’s not to say that more significant moves won’t ultimately be pursued. It’s just hard to foresee it happening in the near-term with the deadline still two months off and the Pirates’ position still unclear. Huntington did acknowledge there could be a “potential scenario” where the team moves a position player for pitching, though he did so in the vaguest possible terms.