Blog Entry

Pence to Pirates is hot new trade rumor

Posted on: July 18, 2011 12:57 pm
Edited on: July 18, 2011 2:39 pm
 
By Matt Snyder

As the Ubaldo Jimenez speculation fire continues to burn, we now have our next hot trade rumor: The Pirates have scouted Hunter Pence (PittsburghLive.com). Pence is hitting .321 with 11 homers, 61 RBI and an .852 OPS. He also has a great throwing arm, as we saw in the All-Star Game.

Now, just as with the Jimenez talk, let's not get carried away here. Scouting a player doesn't mean the teams have exchanged names or will ever talk about a trade. It's just the first of many steps. Still, this could make sense for both teams.

The best argument for the Astros to keep Pence is that they need to rebuild around someone and he's their obvious best player. You can say he's young, but he's 28. The Astros aren't anywhere near contention, so he could be 31 (or older) before they're ready to make a run at the NL Central again. Why not deal him and get a big prospect package back? I feel like that would make more sense, because the likes of Carlos Lee and Brett Myers aren't landing much in return at this point. Pence and Wandy Rodriguez are the ones who need to be moved in an effort to start the rebuilding process.

As for the Pirates, first of all, it's pretty cool to see them as buyers. Variety can be good and the Pirates fans have suffered for quite a while. But let's talk baseball.

There are more pressing needs than right field for the Pirates. Shortstop and third base are weak -- unless Pedro Alvarez all of a sudden is promoted and explodes -- and Lyle Overbay could be upgraded at first. A catcher upgrade would help, though there aren't really many, if any, good ones available. Some extra help in middle relief couldn't hurt either. But if the Pirates could get a star like Pence, it would enable them to move Garrett Jones to first and it does strengthen the lineup as a whole in a pretty big way. Plus, Pence still has a decent chunk of his prime left and the Pirates' cornerstones would be a duo of outfield stars with Pence and Andrew McCutchen.

So, yes, this feels like a move that could benefit both teams, but that doesn't mean it's going to happen or is in the works. Just a rumor, for now.

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Comments

Since: Feb 3, 2008
Posted on: July 18, 2011 3:21 pm
 

Pence to Pirates is hot new trade rumor

Pedro Alvarez already fields better than Aramis Ramirez did at that age and has great power( when he actually hits one). Trading him for anyone will be like The Portland Trailblazers drafting Greg Oden number one. An invitation to repeat a bad, bad mistake.



Since: Jan 6, 2010
Posted on: July 18, 2011 3:20 pm
 

Pence to Pirates is hot new trade rumor

The Bucs will be dammed if they do and dammed if they don't make a trade.  Especially, if it is for a rent-a-player while giving up a possible future star or stars.  I am not convinced they are good enough to make the playoffs with or without a Pence.  My advice would be to hold on as best possible and take your chances with the current club...keep also in mind is that a bunch of regulars on DL will be back soon.



Since: Mar 29, 2007
Posted on: July 18, 2011 3:20 pm
 

Pence to Pirates is hot new trade rumor

I am sorry but need to interupt you gentleman and ask if a trade straight up in fantasy 5 by 5 cc Sabathia for Curtis Granderson is fair. thanks for any help and pardon the interruption...thanks



Since: Jul 18, 2011
Posted on: July 18, 2011 3:16 pm
 

Pence to Pirates is hot new trade rumor

Hunter Pence to the Pirates could work in the favor of both teams. The Astros are in a tough situation and need to drop salary through trades. Those trades would obviously help in their rebuilding process. Pence has reportedly said he was interested for an opportunity in Pittsburgh. He probably realizes that he could be a part of something special in the next few years. He fills a need for the Pirates as well. He could be a mainstay in RF shifting Jones to 1B strengthening the team immensely in the process. Adding a player of his talent that is consistent with the bat with power and adding a good defensive RF. Jones would be an immediate upgrade at first since Overbay has been surprisingly pedestrian at the position this season. Sure the Pirates would have to put together a decent package deal to get Pence, but it is at least worth looking into. Depending on who Houston is eyeing up is the obvious deciding factor. I do not foresee the Pirates Organization shipping Marte, Tabata, or Alvarez to the Lone Star State. It would prove too risky with the huge potential of those three players. I could see the Pirates trading a package including a few of these players: Lincoln, Cain, Locke, Presley, Diaz, Overbay, McKenry, Harrison, Cedeno, or even Rudy Owens.



Since: May 31, 2011
Posted on: July 18, 2011 3:14 pm
 

Pence to Pirates is hot new trade rumor

Even if the Pirates were to swing a deal for Pence, Houston would not accept anything less than top-level prospects for him. Pence is only 28, is in the prime of his career, and is a player Houston could build around if they wanted to. The Pirates may be unhappy with Alvarez' conditioning or attitude, but he did hit 16 HR and drive in 66 in little more than half a season last year. No way the Pirates give up on him by trading him. I could see a deal where they include Marte, Allie, and Diaz, but in my opinion the Bucs shouldn't give up much more than that if trading for Pence really is something they're interested in. 



Since: Feb 3, 2008
Posted on: July 18, 2011 3:13 pm
 

Pence to Pirates is hot new trade rumor

We can use a buying trade to throw in Doumit too. None of these catchers are very good so they should keep the cheap ones that can also throw a guy out from time to time.




Since: Apr 13, 2007
Posted on: July 18, 2011 3:01 pm
 

Pence to Pirates is hot new trade rumor

Stetson Allie & Jameson Taillon can't technically be traded until mod-August due to the specification that a player has to be signed for one calendar year post-signing his initial contract.  Either could be included as a player to be named later though. 

I'm not sure I see a match though - there's next to no way that the Pirates part with a talent like Taillon (who should move relatively quickly for a prep product)  & I don't think a deal headlined by Starling Marte is rich enough without another high level pitching prospect that the Pirates frankly don't have.  They're such an out of nowhere contender too that it probably makes more sense to toe the line & continue to build for the future.   



Since: Jul 18, 2011
Posted on: July 18, 2011 3:01 pm
 

Pence to Pirates is hot new trade rumor

Hunter Pence to the Pirates could work in the favor of both teams. The Astros are in a tough situation and need to drop salary through trades. Those trades would obviously help in their rebuilding process. Pence has reportedly said he was interested for an opportunity in Pittsburgh. He probably realizes that he could be a part of something special in the next few years. He fills a need for the Pirates as well. He could be a mainstay in RF shifting Jones to 1B strengthening the team immensely in the process. Adding a player of his talent that is consistent with the bat with power and adding a good defensive RF. Jones would be an immediate upgrade at first since Overbay has been surprisingly pedestrian at the position this season. Sure the Pirates would have to put together a decent package deal to get Pence, but it is at least worth looking into. Depending on who Houston is eyeing up is the obvious deciding factor. I do not foresee the Pirates Organization shipping Marte, Tabata, or Alvarez to the Lone Star State. It would prove too risky with the huge potential of those three players. I could see the Pirates trading a package including a few of these players: Lincoln, Cain, Locke, Presley, Diaz, Overbay, McKenry, Harrison, Cedeno, or even Rudy Owens.  



Since: Sep 25, 2008
Posted on: July 18, 2011 2:59 pm
 

Pence to Pirates is hot new trade rumor

OF is not the way to go IMO.  Right now they have Tabata, Cutch and Presley who are a good part of why they are playing so well.  First, SS, 3rd, C and pitching are all greater needs than the outfield.  If they are willing to pay the money, D. Lowe would be a great pickup for the rest of the season although he is much more likely to go to the Yankees, Sox, or Detroit.



Since: Feb 3, 2008
Posted on: July 18, 2011 2:58 pm
 

Pence to Pirates is hot new trade rumor

There's no way the Buccos should even think about offering Pressley in any deal. He is as consistent as any of the Pirates since Tabata has been out.


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