Found December 02, 2012 on
Seattle is interested in Garrett Jones. – Photo by Mark Olson
Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times reports that the Seattle Mariners have shown interest in Pittsburgh Pirates first baseman Garrett Jones (via MLBTR). Baker says that the Mariners and Pirates have had talks in the weeks leading up to these meetings about Jones. He adds the disclaimer that Seattle is talking with many different teams, but that actual names were involved in the talks.
One proposal Baker mentions involved Jones and Joel Hanrahan in exchange for first baseman Justin Smoak, catcher John Jaso, and starting pitcher Hector Noesi. Some of that deal would make sense for the Pirates, but some of it wouldn’t. Getting Smoak could give the Pirates a replacement for Jones, and a chance at a reclamation project with some upside. Smoak is pretty much where Pedro Alvarez was heading into the 2012 season, only Smoak carried his struggles through the 2012 season. He’s still got time to turn things around, and still has a lot of upside.
Jaso wouldn’t make much sense with Russell Martin under control for two years. The Pirates have Michael McKenry as their backup catcher. They’ve got Tony Sanchez in Triple-A, and wouldn’t need him until 2014-2015, depending on how long Martin is around. Jaso is coming off a big year at the plate as a backup, with a .276/.394/.456 line in 294 at-bats. He might be a better backup option than McKenry, who does have options remaining and could go to Triple-A for depth.
Noesi turns 26 in January, and is coming off a year where he posted a 5.82 ERA in 106.2 innings, with a 68:39 K/BB ratio. Baker describes him as a back-end rotation starter. I can’t see him making the Pirates’ rotation. A.J. Burnett, Wandy Rodriguez, and James McDonald have spots locked down. After that, Noesi would be competing with Kyle McPherson, Jeff Locke, Vin Mazzaro, and Zach Stewart, and Noesi doesn’t stand out above those guys.
If the Pirates could get Smoak in a deal with Seattle, that could potentially be huge. The other two pieces in this rumor don’t make much sense. Jaso doesn’t provide a ton of value replacing McKenry as Martin’s backup. He would also cost more, as he’s arbitration eligible. Noesi would just add depth, rather than filling a need in the rotation. Even with Smoak, who has lost value with his struggles the last few years, that’s not the type of return you’d want to see for Jones AND Hanrahan.
I think the most important thing here is that the two teams are talking about these players, and to the point where names are being tossed around. Baker does note that it’s possible the Pirates abandoned the talks after signing Martin. He also comes to a similar summary that the key point is Jones is being looked at by Seattle.
If the Pirates did trade Jones and Hanrahan, they’d cut over $11 M in projected salary, taking them down to around $52.5 M, plus whatever salaries were coming back. That would give them room to add additional free agents.
BEST OF MAXIM
The Pittsburgh Pirates are shopping Garrett Jones. The Baltimore Orioles are looking for a power bat. There are a lot of articles coming out about the Orioles possibly being interested in Jones. It’s hard to tell if these are based on any actual discussions, or if it’s a case of people connecting the dots. The Orioles want a power bat and could trade pitching to get that. The...
A few notes as day one of the winter meetings is coming to a close.
**If you’re expecting a big follow up move to the Russell Martin signing, it doesn’t seem like it will happen this week, or possibly at all. Rob Biertempfel has the following from Neal Huntington.
#Pirates GM Huntington re:chance for big move at winter meetings:”For us, biggest move we were going to make this...
We’ve heard that the Pittsburgh Pirates and Seattle Mariners have been talking about Garrett Jones. The first offer we heard about involved Jones and Joel Hanrahan going to Seattle for Justin Smoak, John Jaso, and Hector Noesi. Rob Biertempfel reports that the Pirates asked for top pitching prospect Taijuan Walker in exchange for Jones, but that the Pirates were “rebuffed”...
Earlier today, Rob Biertempfel had a note about two American League teams who said no thanks to trading for Joel Hanrahan. Biertempfel follows that up with a good rundown of Hanrahan’s trade market.
He notes that the Pirates have been shopping Hanrahan for several weeks now. He also mentions that one scout was “shocked” at how low the initial asking price was for the closer...
In a light day of Winter League action yesterday, Starling Marte went 2-for-4, with two singles and a run scored. He now has a .320/.394/.485 line in 25 games. Marte started the season off showing improved plate patience, but has hit a wall the last eight games. After having 11 walks through just 17 games, Marte has failed to draw a walk in his last eight games, striking out six...
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Read Part 1 of the series right here.
Last time, we examined the good and bad of Pittsburgh Pirates’ owner Bob Nutting, President Frank Coonelly, and General Manager Neal Huntington. Here, we’ll take a look at the positives and negatives of some of the Pirates’ other decision makers.
Clint Hurdle, Manager
Hurdle; Image credit carpetbaggery
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The Australian Baseball League announced their participants for the December 16th All-Star game. Stefan Welch made it for the Australian team, while Zac Fuesser will pitcher for the World team. Welch has struggled recently, going 1-for-13 this past weekend, leaving him with a .205/.311/.385 line through 11 games played. Fuesser has been impressive since his first start, in which...
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The Pittsburgh Pirates announced they have signed right-handed pitcher Mike Zagurski to a
minor league contract that includes an invitation to Major League spring training.
With one day of the winter meetings behind us, there wasn't much action on the Pittsburgh Pirate front. In a press conference at the end of the day, Neal Huntington admitted that Joel Hanrahan's probably not as valuable on the trade market now as he was six months ago (this is kind of common sense, of course, though it's not like they could've done anything given...