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Twitter exploded yesterday with seemingly endless Andrew McCutchen trade rumors, intensifying to the highest point it’s probably ever been. Websites debated which teams had the prospects to get a deal done for the former MVP. Some are saying the Pirates are now the aggressor in trade talks, while many wonder whether the Pirates will settle in a deal or get a fair package.

First, we saw Ken Rosenthal say that a McCutchen trade looks “increasingly likely.”

Then, we saw Jeff Passan chime in with a string of tweets:

John Perotto had some thoughts as well:

 

So, what does all of this mean?

Well, for starters, it sounds as though McCutchen will certainly be traded this winter. We knew they were shopping him, but now it seems like the Pirates are the team calling other teams, actively trying to trade McCutchen.

It also sounds like the return for McCutchen might not be great. If it turns out to be similar to what Perrotto has speculated, the fan-base will certainly be underwhelmed. You start to wonder at what point is it worth trading McCutchen and when does it turn into solely a salary dump?

A smart front office would only take an offer that blows them away, or is at least above-average. Neal Huntington seems to be operating like they have to trade McCutchen this off-season, and that it’s not in the realm of possibility for him to improve his play next year. I just hope that they only make a deal if it makes sense for the club, and don’t deal the face of their franchise because they feel they have to.

In more news, Matt Joyce signed with the Oakland A’s yesterday as well;

I was hoping the Pirates would amp up efforts to sign Joyce with Sean Rodriguez gone. Now the team lost two great bench options for next season. We’ll see if they look internally to fill those spots or explore the free agent pool.

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Tyler Waite

Tyler is a data analyst by day and an aspiring sports writer by night. He’s been a Pittsburgh sports fan his entire life, but has a special place for the Pirates. He is fascinated by the analytical side of the game, and wants to impart his analysis as both a writer and as a fan to Pirate fans everywhere.

  • I had faith in Neal’s dealings up until the Lirano trade… i don’t know if he was high that day or what /s

    If cutch is traded and they dont’ address the Pitching needs (from starter to closer) either with the talent they get in return or with the saved money i’ll be pretty upset. They need at least a fair bridge starter to get us to the end of the year, a closer and some young pen arms to replace Watson, Bastardo and Nicasio next season. A player like Cutch should be able to fill those two needs unless they go for someone like Sale who is pretty much an ace.

    Pirates have plenty of internal options for bench if no trades happen, Jaso, Freese, Hanson, Frazier, Stewart, Rogers, Moroff, Diaz, along with Willy Garcia and maybe Osuna later in the season. There are also a handful of players with some versatility on the market

  • Here is a match up that is also unlikely. Arizona’s Zack Greinke and his 172.5M left on his contract over the next 5 years. Before going any further.. it is probably really dumb to go for Zack… If his contract was half as much… then it might be okay.

    Arizona appears to be fairly motivated to get rid of his contract and could use an outfielder.. some math to try make his salary more tolerable to a small club like the pirates. First lets assume that Arizona will pick up ~half of Zack’s remaining contract. That leaves him at 86.25M or 17.25M which is a little more tolerable for a pitcher who has a good chance to be top rotation type again. Now assume we would’ve picked up Cutch’s option which i think is a fairly safe assumption the total due to him would be 28.75M leaving the net payroll in crease of 57.5M or 11.5M a year increase which is pretty much a steal.

    I don’t particularly like Greinke, I’d rather have someone younger and cheaper.. but If the Dbacks will eat around half of the contract I can see it being an option.