Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 12/14/12
The Pittsburgh Pirates answered one question by re-signing setup reliever Jason Grilli as a free agent. However, that move creates another question. Will Joel Hanrahan be the Pirates' closer on Opening Day? Now that the Pirates signed Grilli to a two-year, $6.75 million contract, they have more flexibility to pursue a trade of Hanrahan. Grilli, 37, has just five saves in his 10-year career, but Pirates manager Clint Hurdle has said in the past that he believes Grilli has the stuff and makeup to be a closer. Hanrahan has been extremely reliable in his two full seasons as the closer, converting 76 of 84 save opportunities and being selected to the All-Star Game in both 2011 and 2012. However, there are red flags. Hanrahan can become a free agent after next season, and he is likely to make around $7 million through the salary arbitration process in 2013. Though the Pirates don't pinch pennies quite as closely as they used to, a $7 million salary would likely represent more than...
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