News and Rumors

Pirates Looking at Rafael Furcal

Pirates Looking at Rafael Furcal

Jon Heyman of Sports Illustrated reports that the Pittsburgh Pirates are looking at Rafael Furcal and other shortstop options, although Heyman specified that Jose Reyes and Jimmy Rollins aren't included in the other group.

Furcal is definitely the biggest name available after Reyes and Rollins.  He turned 34 last month, and hit for a .231/.298/.348 line in 2011.  Furcal had much better results in the second half with the St. Louis Cardinals, hitting for a .255/.316/.418 line in 196 at-bats.  In his career, Furcal is a .282/.348/.408 hitter, although he's been up and down the last few years.  He hit for an .826 OPS in 2010, but had a .711 OPS in 2009.  The 2008 season was a career year, with a 1.012 OPS, although it followed a 2007 season where he had a .687 OPS.

At his worst, Furcal is better offensively than someone like Ronny Cedeno or Ramon Santiago, who are the guys that the Pirates have previously been linked to.  Furcal struggled defensively in 2011, with a -9.4 UZR/150, al...

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News and Rumors
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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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