Go west young Neal!

Neal Huntington had an interesting day today. He traded Octavio Dotel, DJ Carrasco, Javier Lopez, Bobby Crosby, and Ryan Church in various trades to the Los Angeles Dodgers, Arizona Diamondacks, and San Francisco Giants.  I can say that I haven’t seen a series of trades to the same division in one day before.

Of course the D-Backs are way out of the division title race, but Huntington still supplied players to two of the four contenders in the NL West.  If Paul Maholm went to the Padres, as rumored, that would have been pretty wild.

Essentially, Huntington today was like an arms dealer supplying weapons to both sides of the conflict.  The arms dealer gets paid from both sides and does not care about the final outcome.  The dealer will get business from the winning side, as long as it’s not discovered that he played both sides of the fence.

Obviously things are a little less life and death in this scenario, especially since if Dotel were a weapon he would be an aging AK-47 rifle and Lopez would be a 38 revolver.  But it does bring up an interesting trend.  In 2008, Huntington dealt in bulk with the AL East (Boston, New York, Toronto) while in 2009 he dealt primarily with the NL East (Atlanta, Washington) with the Giants and Seattle mixed in.  He seems to pick a division and go with it.

The concept of what Huntington did today was pretty smart.  He essentially built his own demand cycle by making a deal with one team and then the other team in the NL West needing to “do something”.

As for the trades themselves, we got some nice pieces and saved a small amount of cash once things are totalled.  I’m hoping that these deals are the prelude to an interesting off-season that sees the Pirates adding quality players rather than trading them.

Perhaps today is the day the tide has turned on the Pirates being constantly in “sell mode” and we can turn to “buy mode”.

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John Lease

Billy Almon playing short for the mid-80’s Pirates was a sign of how weak the farm system had become. Something the current day Pirate system knows a LOT about. I believe the year before was the Johnnie LeMaster era at short…

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