Originally posted on Pirates Prospects  |  Last updated 11/13/12
In the final installment of this series, we’ll take a look at some of the relievers that may be available for the Pirates this offseason.   This piece of the series is the hardest to forecast, as the sheer number of relievers on the various fronts of the market coupled with the inherently volatile nature of relievers, makes it difficult to pair a player with a team. The Pirates have a little bit of instability at the back end of their bullpen as Jason Grilli is a free agent right now and there is speculation that Joel Hanrahan could be traded, in lieu of paying his potential $7M+ salary in 2013.  There are internal candidates for both of these positions, but the Pirates would probably be looking to replace at least one of the two this offseason with a new candidate if both are gone.   FREE AGENTS Using the MLB Trade Rumors free agent tracker (click the header to sort by position), you can see that there are the high-priced tier of closer candidates such as Mariano Rivera, Ryan Madson, Rafael Soriano, Joakim Soria,  and Jose Valverde.  If the Pirates aren’t going to potentially pay Hanrahan $7+M, they won’t be springing for any of these guys either. Ideally, if the Pirates are looking to replace Hanrahan and/or Grilli, they’ll want to find a current setup man who could potentially step in as closer.  The things to look for in any reliever, but especially a closer candidate, is strikeout rate (K/9 7.5 or greater), walk rate (BB/9 less than 3.0) and home run rate (HR/9 less than 1.0).  Here are some guys the Pirates may want to look at on potential 1 year deals. Mike Adams – The 34-year old Adams has been a setup man in recent years with San Diego and Texas.  He has all the tools mentioned above in terms of his rate and is coming off of a $4.4M salary in 2012.  He is probably looking for a 3 year deal to cash in one final time, so he may not want a 1 or 2 year deal with the Pirates. Chad Durbin – The 35-year old Durbin is not a strong candidate to be a closer, but perhaps he could be re-purposed as a setup man.  His rates aren’t ideal and his stuff is pedestrian in terms of speed on his fastball, but he could be an interesting value pickup. Jason Frasor – Frasor, 35 in 2013, would be a good candidate to examine as a potential closer or setup man.  Frasor does have 36 career saves, with the most recently in one season being 11 in 2009.  His 93 mph fastball would play well in either role. Matt Lindstrom – Lindstrom seems like the perfect Neal Huntington candidate for a relief pitcher.  His fastball averages 95 and is paired with an 85 mph slider.  The 33-year old has always had good strikeout rates and would be a viable closer candidate. Jason Grilli – Grilli is the most logical candidate to sign as a free agent.  The 36-year old knows the lay of the city, knows the clubhouse, is loyal to Clint Hurdle, and is also highly effective.  He could slide into the closer role if Hanrahan is moved, allowing a player like Bryan Morris to be his understudy in a setup role for a year before moving into the role himself in 2014.   NON-TENDER CANDIDATES I have repeatedly said that the non-tender market is the worst avenue to try and find quality players.  The exception to that is for a reliever, as there are always bargains to be had if you wait out the market long enough. Alfredo Aceves – Aceves may have worn out his welcome in Boston, although some of his antics may have to be attributed to the circus atmosphere fostered by Bobby Valentine.  The 30-year old was the closer in Boston last year for some time, as the Red Sox were beset by injuries, resulting in 25 saves.  His 94 mph fastball and 81 mph curveball were his most effective pitches last year. Clay Hensley – The 33-year old Hensley has had control problems throughout his career (4.2 BB/9 in career, 5.3 in 2012), but his strikeout rate and home run rate have been very good historically.  Hensley could be a guy to watch as a setup candidate. There are many other guys that may come on the horizon as the non-tender deadline draws closer.   TRADE CANDIDATES It is too difficult to forecast what teams may be looking to trade relievers, especially ones that the Pirates may want to pick up as a value-add for the back end of the bullpen.   Most likely the Pirates will wait out the market for a reliever and see if values can be had later on in the offseason, perhaps not until the calendar flips over to 2013.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Hasselbeck ‘strongly leaning towards playing’ in 18th season

Pitchers to wear new protective headwear in spring training

Klay Thompson: Warriors will shoot for all-time wins record

Bryce Harper 'squashed' beef with Jonathan Papelbon

WWE has record revenue despite perceived troubles

CC Sabathia declares himself ‘ready to go’ after alcohol rehab

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Suns still want to deal Morris before trade deadline

Report: Celtics could offer best deal for Dwight Howard

Hawks 'taking phone calls about everybody on the roster'

Philly mayor calls LeSean McCoy ‘cowardly'

Report: Price might not return this season due to knee injury

Matt Forte confirms he won’t be returning to Bears

Kevin Durant to the Warriors makes little sense

City of Atlanta, Braves fighting over iconic Hank Aaron statue

Brock Osweiler hopes to remain part of ‘very special’ Broncos

Kobe Bryant receives great gift from ‘media’ member

Ranking the 10 best dunk contests ever

LeBron to be immortalized with Akron Zips bobblehead

Four best free-agent destinations for Matt Forte

Five reasons Oregon will be the sexiest team in March Madness

Was Derek Fisher involved with girlfriend of former Knick?

Steven Stamkos unforthcoming on his no-move clause

Antonio Cromartie's wife is 'definitely' getting her tubes tied

Ciara: It’s getting harder to stay abstinent with Russell Wilson

The top five millennial NBA All-Star moments

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

On Kobe Bryant and taking greatness for granted

Bucks need to choose between wins, development

Fantasy booking WrestleMania 32

Unrestricted free agents each team must consider re-signing

QUIZ: Name the winners of the NBA Slam Dunk Contest

Thank you Daniel Bryan

The timeless greatness of Jaromir Jagr

The NCAAB power rankings

Report: Kings to keep coach George Karl

Was Alain Vigneault right about NHL's lack of punishment towards Wayne Simmonds?

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker