Pirates want a major league ready starter for Maholm

A lot of Paul Maholm rumors today, which can be summed up here at MLB Trade Rumors.  The key pieces of information:

-The San Diego Padres, Los Angeles Dodgers, and New York Mets are the three teams mentioned as interested in Maholm.

-A few reports that the Pirates and Padres are close on a deal, although Dejan Kovacevic tweets that the two teams aren’t close to a deal.

-Dejan also reports that the Pirates are looking for a major league ready starter in return for Maholm.  No word on whether that would be the key piece in the deal, or just an additional piece.  Some options from those teams:

San Diego: Simon Castro was rated the #57 prospect in baseball prior to the 2010 season, and the number two prospect in the San Diego system.  He’s 22, and playing in AA, so not exactly major league ready.  Can touch 95-96 MPH, and while his biggest issue has been control, he’s been much better the last two years in that area.  He’s the only guy close to major league ready who would have any value to the Pirates, considering their current AA rotation.

Los Angeles: John Ely has been in the majors a few times this year, and wouldn’t be a bad pickup, as long as he’s not the only guy in the deal.  The Dodgers would be the ideal trade partner, as the top of their prospect list is loaded with pitching prospects, with a lot close to the majors.

NY Mets: The only pitchers of value are Jennry Mejia and Jonathon Niese, although each are producing in the majors for New York.  The Pirates could have a chance if they also packaged a reliever, but overall the deal wouldn’t make sense.

It seems that the best option for the Pirates would be the Dodgers.  Maybe we’re hearing so many Padres rumors for a reason today.  Perhaps coming out of the Pirates camp to get the Dodgers to give up more for Maholm?

Author: Tim Williams

Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

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