The Pittsburgh Pirates enter the 2011-2012 off-season with four big needs for the 2012 season. With Derrek Lee, Paul Maholm, Ronny Cedeno, Ryan Doumit, and Chris Snyder all departing, the Pirates have needs at catcher, first base, shortstop, and the rotation. I’ve discussed each position individually, along with some free agent options at catcher, shortstop, first base, and the rotation.
I was asked on Twitter yesterday what I would consider a successful off-season. My response shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who read the above four articles. I’d take Ramon Hernandez or Rod Barajas at catcher, Clint Barmes at shortstop, Derrek Lee or Carlos Pena at first base, and one of Chris Capuano, Paul Maholm, Erik Bedard, or Jeff Francis in the rotation. If I had to pick my ideal off-season, it would be Hernandez, Barmes, Lee, and Capuano.
In a perfect world, this list would include someone like Edwin Jackson or Jose Reyes. I’d rather keep the list realistic, as I don’t think the Pirates will be players for any of those options. With all of the teams that will be in on those players, the Pirates would have to seriously over-pay to lure one of those top options to Pittsburgh.
We’ve looked at the available free agents. There’s also a few non-tender and trade candidates that have been floated around. I’ve listed my preference (which is pretty much limited to the free agents, since there are too many variables to consider with the trade and non-tender markets). Now it’s your turn. What would be your ideal off-season for all four positions? You can pick one option for each position. You’ll be able to pick “Non-Tender Candidate”, “Trade”, or “Internal Option” for each position, as well as some of the realistic free agent options. Feel free to expand on your thoughts in the comments.
Tim started Pirates Prospects in 2009 from his home in Virginia, which was 40 minutes from where Pedro Alvarez made his pro debut in Lynchburg. That year, the Lynchburg Hillcats won the Carolina League championship, and Pirates Prospects was born from Tim's reporting along the way. The site has grown over the years to include many more writers, and Tim has gone on to become a credentialed MLB reporter, producing Pirates Prospects each year, and will publish his 11th Prospect Guide this offseason. He has also served as the Pittsburgh Pirates correspondent for Baseball America since 2019. Behind the scenes, Tim is an avid music lover, and most of the money he gets paid to run this site goes to vinyl records.