Zach Duke - Jason Pohuski/Cal Sport Media

We are just a bit over 24 hours from the trade deadline, and the rumors are flying left and right. That being said, after being very active leading up to the past two deadlines, the Pirates have been relatively quiet so far this year. We have already taken a look at what Paul Maholm and Garrett Jones might fetch if the front office decided to deal them. Today, let’s take a look at Zach Duke.

Let’s begin by projecting Duke’s future performance. His updated ZiPS projection has Duke improving in the second half, finishing with a 4.60 overall FIP in 166.1 innings. That should make him worth about 1 win over the remainder of the season. Duke has generally been worth about 2 wins per season, so let’s conservatively give him 1.5 wins in 2011. He is being paid $4.5 million this season, meaning he should be due about $1.4 million over the final two months. He is arbitration eligible next season for the third and final time, and should receive a small increase. Let’s estimate a $6 million contract for 2011. I doubt Duke will be in the running for draft pick compensation, so that should not be a factor. All of that gives us a surplus value of $4.7 million.

 

Year Sal (M) WAR Val (M) Net (M)
2010 $1.4 1.0 $4.9 $3.5
2011 $6.0 1.5 $7.2 $1.2
Total $7.4 2.5 $12.1 $4.7

 

Again, here is the chart of prospect values that I used in the previous posts.

 

Top 10 hitting prospects $36.5 *
Top 11-25 hitters $25.1
Top 26-50 hitters $23.4
Top 51-75 hitters $14.2
Top 76-100 hitters $12.5
Top 10 pitching prospects $15.2
Top 11-25 pitchers $15.9
Top 26-50 pitchers $15.9
Top 51-75 pitchers $12.1
Top 76-100 pitchers $9.8
Grade B pitchers (as graded by Sickels) $7.3
Grade B hitters $5.5
Grade C pitchers 22 or younger $2.1
Grade C pitchers 23 or older $1.5
Grade C hitters 22 or younger $0.7
Grade C hitters 23 or older $0.5

* in millions

 

Plain and simple, Duke does not have a ton of value. The best the Pirates could probably get is a marginal low level pitcher or two. Think Brooks Pounders, Nathan Adcock, etc. I doubt that return would be enough to entice the Bucs to deal Duke, considering the organization’s extreme lack of starting pitching depth at the major league level.

What would you do?

 

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