Found August 28, 2013 on
(Follow me on Twitter @jim_krug; opening image credit John Banks, Getty Images)
Buck; image credit cdn.newsday
1. With as big of a critic as I’ve been towards Pittsburgh Pirates’ GM Neal Huntington over the years, I have to give him some credit for yesterday’s waiver trade with the New York Mets, which brought the Buccos OF Marlon Byrd and C John Buck. Although OF Alfonso Soriano is on an absolute tear with the New York Yankees, you could argue Byrd- in the midst of a career year with 21 HR and an .848 OPS- was by far the best bat traded this season.
2. My guess- which was echoed by the ROOT Sports Broadcast Team last night- is that Buck was included more at the Mets’ urging than the Pirates. He’s not a huge statistical upgrade over rookie Tony Sanchez, but Sanchez himself has looked poor in a number of late-game pinch-hitting opportunities. Buck similarly struggles to reach base (.285 OBP vs. Sanchez’s .267 OBP), but still has 15 HR on the season, and can spell Russell Martin defensively. At minimum, Buck provides the Pirates with at least a potential power bat off of the bench, of which they’ve had few to choose from this season.
3. Pittsburgh Penguins’ GM Ray Shero may have to step aside as the city’s only Trade Deadline wheeler-dealer. Over the past 3 seasons, Neal Huntington has acquired all of the following in attempts to bolster the Pirates for a stretch run:
2011- Derrek Lee, Ryan Ludwick
2012- Travis Snider, Gaby Sanchez, Wandy Rodriguez, Chad Qualls
2013- Marlon Byrd, John Buck
These returns have ranged from the good (Lee) to the bad (Qualls, Ludwick) to the injured (Rodriguez), to the ineffective (Snider, Sanchez). None of them were blockbusters by any means, but Huntington at least tried to slightly improve each club without parting with significant prospects. I acknowledge the effort, even if the end results were not significant.
4. I think people are really overreacting to the loss of 2B prospect Dilson Herrera to the Mets, such as this confusing rant by beat writer James Santelli:
It’s a stupid trade. It’s stupid to deal a top-100ish middle infield prospect and what could be a pretty good PTBNL for one month and however many playoff games of Marlon Byrd and John Buck. It’s dumb, and it’s easy to see Herrera as good, speedy second baseman for the 2016-2022 Mets.‘
Herrera; image credit beckett
Calling Dilson Herrera a “top-100ish” prospect isn’t remotely accurate in my eyes. He is a well-regarded 19-year old player, but he’s seen his OBP decline and strikeout rate climb upon reaching Low-A this season. He’s at least 3 years away from having a serious shot at the Majors. He’s very slight, listed at only 5’10″ and 150 lb., and shouldn’t be anywhere near a top-100 prospect list for 2014. My guess is that he’ll peak in the 150 range at best.
Herrera is the perfect type of prospect to move in a trade like this: well-regarded enough to take some heat off of Mets’ GM Sandy Alderson, but not nearly an elite-level prospect that will actually hinder the Pirates for the foreseeable future.
5. My only concern that work hurt my overall evaluation of the trade is the “PTBNL” portion of the deal. Huntington went on record that the piece would be “significant”, but that could easily be pandering and not wanting to throw a GM colleague under the bus. Generally, players-to-be-named later are not significant; rather, the receiving team is given a list of raw, somewhat questionable names from which to choose, and have the remainder of the season to figure it out.
Extreme thoughts have ranged from serious pitching prospects like SP Nick Kingham, down to useful but not legitimate farmhands like RP Vic Black. My hope is that the end result is much closer to Black, and much farther away from Kingham.
Overall, in what has been a brutal buyer’s market since late-July, GM Huntington managed to pick up the best bat exchanged this season, and a potentially useful bat off the bench, for a solid but unspectacular prospect and a PTBNL. If Marlon Byrd can maintain his torrid 2013 in the black-and-gold as opposed to the orange-and-blue, this could end up being an excellent trade that bolsters the Pirates’ offense for a serious run beyond the NL Wild Card round.
Thanks for reading.
BEST OF MAXIM
As they say, timing is everything! The New York Mets timing has been off all year, this time as they dealt OF Marlon Byrd to the Pittsburgh Pirates on the SAME DAY they planned to give away T-shirts to fans in his honor. According to Ted Berg of “For the Win” (via USA Today), “Let it Fly” Marlon Byrd themed jerseys were poised for distribution as part of the Mets “T...
Acquiring Marlon Byrd did not swing the playoff odds too much, but Wednesday night’s win certainly did. (Photo Credit: David Hague)
It would take a Hindenburg-esque crash for the Pirates to miss the MLB postseason (98-percent chance Bucs make it), but it is unlikely they will take the NL Central over the St. Louis Cardinals (32 percent).
The Bucs can shoulder some blame. The Pirates...
Marlon Byrd had been in the Pittsburgh Pirates' clubhouse for all of five minutes when the newly acquired right fielder found his name penciled in as the cleanup hitter Wednesday night against Milwaukee.
Asked if he was surprised about being thrown into the lineup so quickly, the 12-year veteran the Pirates hope will help ignite a sagging offense just smiled.
Marlon Byrd didn’t have the game-winning hit or even the knockout blow, really, when the Pirates beat the Brewers Wednesday. But, the Pirates’ newest addition to the starting lineup made the most noise with a three-run home run over the center field fence and into the bushes that broke open a 4-1 ballgame in the bottom of the seventh.
“It was one of those things, you come to...
Marlon Byrd has been claimed off waivers by an unknown team.
Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports that Marlon Byrd has been claimed on waivers by an unknown team, and that the New York Mets could try and trade him. Yesterday we heard a similar report on Kendrys Morales. The difference here is that Byrd is in the NL, which means he only has to pass about 12-13 teams to get to the Pirates...
Adam Rubin does it again…
The Mets have sent cash, John Buck and Marlon Byrd to the Pittsburgh Pirates for 19-year-old Single-A SS Dilson Herrera and a player to be named later, according to ESPN New York.
Herrera is the 20th best prospect in the Pirates minor leagues according to Baseball America and 11th according to MiLB.com.
Herrera, 19, is playing his first full season in...
The Mets have traded John Buck and Marlon Byrd and cash considerations to the Pittsburgh Pirates for 19-year-old Single-A second baseman Dilson Herrera and a player to be named later, according to ESPN New York.
Herrera is the 20th best prospect in the Pirates minor leagues according to Baseball America and 11th best according to MiLB.com who also ranked him just behind Wilmer...
Born: August 30, 1977
Drafted: 10th Round, 306th Overall, 1999 (Phillies)
How Acquired: Trade from Mets (with John Buck for Dilson Herrera and PTBNL)
College: Georgia Perimeter College
WTM’S PIRATE PLAYER PROFILES
Byrd has had an odd career. He hit consistently...
10:00 AM Update
Adam Rubin heard through the grapevine that Marlon Byrd was claimed off waivers.
The Mets can either pull him back or work out a deal with that one team.
8:30 AM Update
Among the candidates to be traded are catcher John Buck, outfielder Marlon Byrd and left-handed reliever Pedro Feliciano. A source with knowledge of the Mets’ plans added that major...
According to his sources, Adam Rubin of ESPN New York is reporting that the Mets plan to promote left-hander Robert Carson and outfielder Matt den Dekker to the majors from Triple-A Las Vegas. And although none of these moves have been officially announced.as of yet, Anthony Recker is also believed to be joining the group as well.
One spot will be opened with Matt Harvey soon...
Prohibitively, the addition of Marlon Byrd makes the Pittsburgh Pirates a better baseball team. Had Byrd been on the Pirates’ roster all season, he’d essentially be the third-best hitter on the team.
And, the Pirates may own three or four extra wins if he started 2013 in Pittsburgh with his WAR of 3.5. In contrast, the production received from right field this season from the...
Earlier today, Adam Rubin of ESPN New York reported that Mets outfielder Marlon Byrd had been claimed on waivers. It turns out the Pittsburgh Pirates had claimed him and hey did not claim Byrd to block him from other teams.
Adam Rubin is now reporting that the Mets have traded outfielder Marlon Byrd, catcher John Buck and cash to the Pirates. The Mets received minor-league second...
The Pittsburgh Pirates have acquired outfielder Marlon Byrd and catcher John Buck from the New York Mets.
Pittsburgh general manager Neal Huntington announced the deal on Tuesday afternoon. The Pirates will send New York minor league infielder Dilson Herrera and a player to be named later in exchange for two veterans Pittsburgh hopes will help the franchise to its first playoff...
Really, I'm not sure that I can pick my favorite moment from this game. Marlon Byrd's game-sealing three-run homer into centerfield bushes followed by a simultaneous Steve Blass and Twitter explosion of Byrd puns was pretty great, but all it really did was put the finishing touches on a game that had looked like a win for a while. For my money, I'm not sure I've ever...
The Mets took the field at Citi Field on Marlon Byrd t-shirt night devoid of their former starting outfielder and starting catcher John Buck. But that was not enough to keep the Mets from dominating the Phillies thanks to a stellar pitching performance from Mets starter Jonathan Niece, who tossed...