Today was one of those exciting times to be a baseball fan. Today was the trade deadline and there were a few very high profile pitchers available: David Price and Jon Lester. The Pirates were linked to both of them and naturally since they missed out on both, the fanbase is going crazy. Here are my thoughts on the matter…
It would have been great to have a pitcher of his caliber. The early rumors were that the Red Sox wanted Josh Bell and most likely another high prospect. I would have been alright giving up Bell for Lester, but not another prospect. Especially if you are giving up one of the top pitching prospects. You would only be getting Lester for the rest of the season, is it really worth giving up two potential players?
He ended up being traded to the A’s in a very weird deal: Lester and a competitive balance pick for Yoenis Cespedes and Jonny Gomes. The A’s have the best record in baseball and earlier they traded for two starting pitchers to help shore up their rotation. Look at what Boston got though, the A’s best hitter.
After the Lester trade, there were rumors that the Pirates were one of the front runners for Price. This was a deal that I was hoping the Pirates would go after. They would have Price for next year as well. If the Rays wanted Bell and say Nick Kingham, I would say go for it.
Instead, we here that there was a three team deal: the Tigers get Price, the Mariners get Austin Jackson, and the Rays got Nick Franklin, Drew Smyly, and Willy Adames. I have no clue if the Pirates made an offer that rivaled that, but they should have. I guess the Pirates could have tossed in a started like Jeff Locke since the Rays wanted a starter it seems.
It looks like neither team was all that interested in young prospects. The Rays are only five games or so out of a playoff spot. The Red Sox know if they shuffle a few things they can easily be right back in the hunt next season. Also, from what I read, it seems the Red Sox wanted to send Lester to a team that would have almost no chance of signing him in the offseason. They believe they can resign him, so this way they get an outfielder and then snatch Lester back up in the winter. Kind of a dick move.
So what I am saying is this: Pirates fans need to stop getting so upset that the front office did not land these guys. Maybe they made some great offers and those teams just refused. That does happen. Or maybe those teams were just asking for way too much.
I keep hearing people say that if the Rays (or I suppose the Mariners) wanted Polanco or Marte that the Pirates should have taken that deal. I disagree. It was only a few short months ago when people were freaking out that Polanco was still in the minors. Then when he was on fire, people were saying that the front office better lock that outfield up forever.
Yes, it is frustrating watching all these teams get better. Yes, the Pirates need to use their prospects to acquire high end rental players. Unfortunately, when all you have is prospects to bargain with, you cannot just get rid of them easily. Would Lester or Price bring them a World Series?