Neal Huntington may not command the rock star status of many other baseball GMs, but there is no doubt he is one of the best in the business.
I just got an auto that cost me $10 delivered. That's pennies on the dollar which is exactly what Neal has been able to do.
The Pirates offseason wasn't very splashy, but it got the job done.
They acquired an everyday sparkplug catcher who profiles as one of the best pitch framers in the game (Fracisco Cervelli) for a left handed reliever (Justin Wilson)
For an $11M / 4 year contract they got a super utility KBO player who is currently leading all rookies in WAR (Jung Ho Kang).
They resigned AJ Burnett and Francisco Liriano for less than what other teams were offering.
Oh and he traded a very useful bench piece (Travis "Lunchbox" Snider) for 2 lefty prospects and then resigned Lunchbox to a minor league deal leaving Baltimore on the hook for the bulk of the contract.
At the trade deadline, Huntington traded away minor league fillers and cash considerations for J.A. Happ, Joe Blanton, Joakim Soria, Michael Morse and Aramis Ramirez.
Since being acquired by the Bucs, Happ has pitched 21 innings of 2.08 ERA baseball striking out 22 batters. Blanton, has pitched entirely in relief since being acquired by the Bucs and has been absolutely phenomenal. In 15 innings, he has allowed just 1 Earned Run and struck out 20. Soria has also pitched very well in his brief stint allowing only a few Earned Runs over 11 innings of relief. Combined those three pitcher acquisitions have gotten 5 Wins and 1 save and have a combined ERA of 1.69 over 48 innings.
On the offensive side of the trade deadline, the Pirates bolstered their bench by getting Aramis Ramirez and Michael Morse to provide on base skills and pop off the bench instead of guys like Steve Lombardozzi and Brent Morel.
He's not splashy, but in Neal I trust.
Let's Go Bucs!!!!