Originally posted on Where Is Andy Van Slyke  |  Last updated 11/9/11
Now that I've run through the various positions that the Pirates need to upgrade this winter and ways they might go about doing so (if you missed the individual pieces: starting pitching, shortstop, catcher, first base), let's take a step back and look at the team as a whole. This is a tall task facing Neal Huntington this winter. The Pirates have problems attracting decent free agents, Huntington may or may not have trouble identifying scrap-heap players that aren't pitchers (it depends on how much of the blame you place on the first problem of convincing free agents to play for the Pirates), and the Pirates have a number of places they need to upgrade. If they can't upgrade all of them, they face making huge downgrades over even the marginal players that they've let go or may let go in the near future. That means that if the Pirates do manage to find, say, a better-than-Ronny-Cedeno shortstop, they may give that upgrade back by playing Mike McKenry and Matt Pagnozzi all year. On t...
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