Neal Huntington has earned some trust after building the Pirates to a 94 win team.
If it was up to me, A.J. Burnett would have been given a qualifying offer of $14.1 M. That would have been more than a fair price for Burnett, no matter what valuation system you look at, and no matter what cost per win you use. I also believe that the Pirates have the payroll for Burnett, since that salary would put them right around $77 M, which is a few million more than where they finished last year. Factor in the added revenue from the National TV deals, the playoffs, and the increased ticket sales last year, and the Pirates could definitely afford Burnett plus other help.
So when Neal Huntington said multiple times this off-season that the Pirates can't afford to pay A.J. Burnett, I disagreed. I ...
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.