When the new Collective Bargaining Agreement came out during the 2011-2012 off-season, I wrote about a lot of the downsides for small market teams. At the time the downside was somewhat debatable. We didn't see how the new system would impact the Pirates at the time. There was some debate over whether the new system would hurt small market teams. Some argued that eventually teams like the Yankees and Red Sox could take their big spending to the draft and the international markets, and take away the Pirates' only avenue for acquiring young potential impact players.

Here's what we knew at the time: small market teams had no chance at adding star players through free agency. Their only hope was that they could draft and develop a big impact guy, or sign a future impact guy out of the inter...

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