January 31, 2010

Huntington: We're Buying At Trade Deadline

PITTSBURGH, Pa. / January 31, 2010

While Pirates management has largely kept their plans to win the F'ing Championship under wraps, they can't lie when asked pointed questions. In today's Post-Gazette, general manager Neil Huntington revealed that the Pirates would be willing to trade minor leaguers this summer to acquire the finishing touches on the championship team.

It has been 12 years since the franchise's last in-season trade acquisition aimed at contending, that being Shawon Dunston in 1997. Huntington would not rule out spending his untapped payroll that way this summer should something equally surprising occur: "Oh, absolutely. We're working toward the day when we can trade prospects for veterans, where those kinds of deals can put us where we want to be."

While it's a bit early to speculate on trade deadline acquisitions, I could see the Bucs trading for a fourth ace pitcher for a playoff rotation of Ace, Ohlendorf, Duke and Maholm. Shortstop looks like the only hole in the lineup, but unfortunately is the hardest position to upgrade at the trade deadline.

The symbolic value of a deadling trade is almost as important as the baseball value. Adding Cliff Lee or another pitcher of that caliber will show that the Pirates, and this city, are serious about winning a championship.


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