Dejan Kovacevic tweets that he’s hearing the Pittsburgh Pirates are offering left handed starter Paul Maholm on the trade market. That’s something I speculated about this morning, after this week’s additions of Kevin Correia and Scott Olsen, combined with the continued interest in Kenshin Kawakami and other starting pitchers.
My guess is that Maholm would bring in anything from a grade B pitcher or hitter, to a top 76-100 pitcher, depending on the demand for starters, and how other teams value his 2012 option. I don’t think Kawakami would be a good replacement for Maholm, although a Maholm trade could open up one of the following scenarios:
-The Pirates could get a pitching prospect like Brandon Beachy for a cheap price for taking Kawakami’s salary off Atlanta’s hands
-The Pirates could pair the prospects they got from a Maholm trade with either Joel Hanrahan or Evan Meek to try and get a young pitcher via trade from another team
Currently the Pirates have a rotation that will include Maholm, James McDonald, Ross Ohlendorf, and Kevin Correia. Scott Olsen, Charlie Morton, Brad Lincoln, and Jeff Karstens will be competing for the final spot. The Pirates do have room to make a trade, although if they dealt Maholm, I’d prefer to see them replace him with an option that would be better than Olsen/Morton/Lincoln/Karstens.