Pittsburgh Pirates General Manager Neal Huntington said in his press conference today, via Dejan Kovacevic, that as the team sits right now, Ryan Doumit is the starting right fielder for the 2011 season.
From a financial standpoint, that makes sense. Doumit is owed $5.1 M, which is the third highest salary on the 2011 roster. The Pirates also have Chris Snyder as the starting catcher, which leaves Doumit without a starting role. As far as how Doumit rates as a starting outfielder, the move doesn’t make sense. Doumit’s defense is horrible in right field, and his offense has been poor the last two seasons, with a combined .251/.318/.410 line.
We heard earlier today that the Pirates would love to trade Doumit. This latest update doesn’t necessarily mean that Doumit WILL be the starting right fielder on opening day. The announcement could just be a move to improve Doumit’s trade value. The Pirates could also add an external option, such as Jack Cust or Matt Diaz.