Bucs’ Trades = Win

Interesting deals by the Pirates at Saturday’s trading deadline. Gone are:

Bobby Crosby, SS (to Diamondbacks) .224/.301/.295
Ryan Church, OF (to Diamondbacks) .182/.240/.312
DJ Carrasco, P (to Diamondbacks) 3.88 ERA, 1.29 WHIP, 7.3 K/9
Octavio Dotel, P (to Dodgers) 4.28 ERA, 1.30 WHIP, 10.8 K/9
$500,000 cash (to Dodgers)
Javier Lopez, P (to Giants) 2.79 ERA, 1.47 WHIP, 5.1 K/9

The pitchers will be missed. All were effective and part of a strong bullpen. Crosby and Church were ineffective to put it nicely. The thing that all of these players have in common is that none of them were part of the long term plan and all are (or should be) easily replaceable for next season. In return the Pirates received:

Chris Snyder, C (from Diamondbacks) .231/.352/.426
Pedro Ciriaco, SS (from Diamondbacks) (AAA) .259/.278/.392
$3,000,000 cash (from Diamondbacks)
James McDonald, P (from Dodgers) (AAA) 4.41 ERA, 1.39 WHIP, 8.1 K/9
Andrew Lambo, OF (from Dodgers) (AA) .271/.325/.420
John Bowker, OF (from Giants) (AAA) .310/.388/.594
Joseph Martinez, P (from Giants) (AAA) 3.32 ERA, 1.28 WHIP, 7.2 K/9

That’s a Ryan Doumit clone with better D, 2 rotation candidates, one OF who could come up now, one young OF who projects very well, a toolsy SS prospect, AND a wad of dough. If there’s anything not to like here I can’t see it. For more analysis and detailed breakdown on the young guys check the blogroll to the left. There have been several good articles written since Saturday.

Pedropalooza!

Pedro hits vs Zach Duke at Pirate City

The day has finally arrived – Pedro Alvarez has been called up to the Pirates. He’ll start at third base as I detailed in my previous post. I expect him to hit 5th between Jones and Doumit, but it wouldn’t surprise me for Russell to put him lower in the lineup as JR like to “ease guys in.”  (Note to JR: Not everyone needs to be eased in. Some guys will do better it you just throw them in the deep end and see if they can swim.) No word yet on who’ll be sent out to make room on the roster but the candidates include every player on the bench.

OTHER BITS: Lastings Milledge is getting squeezed for playing time since Jose Tabata was recalled last week. Not that I mind this, but its Ryan Church that he’s getting squeezed for and neither of them have been hitting lately. I can’t wait for Steve Pearce to get healthy and start playing first again so Garrett Jones can slide back to RF.

Tim at BUCCO FANS has a great redux on last year’s trade with Seattle. Well worth the read. I mentioned last week on Twitter that it is amazing how Ronny Cedeno is the best player to come out of this deal. If any of the three pitchers the Pirates received reaches the majors then it will be an even better trade.

But we can worry about all of that another day. Happy #Pedropalooza everyone!

UPDATE: To make room on the roster for Pedro, Akinori Iwamura was Designated for Assignment. The club has said they hope to trade him in the next 10 days. Good luck with that.

Pedro is batting 6th and playing 3rd base.

Pedro Alvarez news and lineup chaos.

Big news from last night’s post-game show with Rocco DeMaro: GM Neal Huntington confirmed that when Pedro Alvarez is called up he will play third base and Andy LaRoche will go to a bench/utility role. This is not entirely surprising as NH has always said that he didn’t want to devalue Pedro by moving him to another position unless he had to but this is the first confirmation I’ve heard or read.

I fully expect Alvarez to be recalled for the next home stand starting Tuesday.  The everyday lineup should then look like this:

Behold my awesome MS paint skills

Not too bad. One more power hitter at 1B/RF and it would look a lot better. Now given that lineup potential, why would John Russell do this tonight:

McCutchen CF
Walker 3B
Doumit 1B
Jones RF
Church DH
Milledge LF
Iwamura 2B
Cedeno SS
Jaramillo C

No Tabata? Church DHing? Doumit NOT DHing? Iwamura playing? Let’s tackle these individually.

Jose Tabata is a 21 and has been in the bigs for three days. Word from the Pirates (via Rocco) is that Tabata is just getting a day off. He’s played two games! More truthful would be saying “Justin Verlander is starting and we don’t think Jose’s ready to face someone that nasty.”

Ryan Church doesn’t need to be in the game at DH. He had one week last month where he was the only one who was hitting and now JR is in love with him. My guess is that he’s still regaining his strength after a nasty stomach flu and this is JR’s way to get his bat in there while taking it easy on him. But there’s no excuse for that when…

…You have your good bat/no glove catcher playing out of position at first base. If Doumit’s not going to catch he should be DHing. Barring that, Delwyn Young – who is as mobile as a road cone – who be a better choice at DH.

Finally there is Iwamura. I posted about his struggles last month and nothing improved after that. Luckily Walker was promoted and has hit well and been very athletic at second. I expect Aki is in because he’s more familiar with Verlander. Also, Andy LaRoche’s back has been a problem and he hasn’t hit at all lately either.

That’s the end of my lineup rant. If you’re still with me then thanks for reading. For all I know these guys could go hit six homeruns tonight and run away with the game. It isn’t likely but anything is possible in a single game.

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