|2005 Donruss Greats Blue Parallel 16/50|
Jason Bay was just what you envision the best baseball player on a team to be like. He would help carry an offense, all out hustle on every ball hit to him in the outfield, steal bases when it was needed, and greet the fans with a smile and an autograph at the bus stop. He was my favorite player, simply put.
When he was traded in 2008 to Boston, I knew it was happening. It was obvious that the new General Manager Neal Huntington (who I think is one of the best GMs in the game to operate with the small payroll he has and still be competitive) would blow up the team and start from scratch from the ground up. Yesterday marked the trade deadline and the Pirates were silent. They didn't acquire any big names to get them into the post season. They are relying on a team that is already the 5th best team in the NL prior to yesterday. With the current team they have, they were only a half game away from a Wild Card berth.
The team might have struggled early in the season, but they have since added guys like Gregory Polanco, Jeff Locke, and Vance Worley to the 25 man roster and in doing so has caused the team to be one of the NL's hottest teams since May. I think their bench is a big need and can't wait to see both Brent Morel and Michael Martinez go. I'd personally rather see Chase D'arnaud up there hacking at the ball when we need a right handed pinch hitter in the 7th inning than either of those two clowns. At least D'arnaud can play a good shortstop and is a speed demon on the basepaths so he can pinch run too.
I wasn't looking for the Pirates to add Price or Lester, but I was hoping they could add another weapon in the bullpen. Then again if Nick Kingham continues to exceed expectations he may be called up in September and used strictly in relief similar to what the Rays did with David Price in 2008 and Adam Wainwright did for the Cardinals in 2006. By the way both those teams went on to the World Series those years.