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 Post subject: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 2:52 am 
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From John Perrotto:

http://www.timesonline.com/sports/pirates/perrotto-appears-likely-burnett-isn-t-coming-back-with-bucs/article_77f3730e-921a-5114-b74a-06c29ab95391.html#.UsEBC2j56y8.facebook

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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 12:58 pm 
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Apparently I wasn't crazy to suggest that Polanco could break camp with the Bucs this spring. The article goes on to say that many scouts who watched him this winter say he is ready for the big leagues.


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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 1:19 pm 
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If A.J. Burnett ends up pitching for the Orioles, then the Pirates made a mistake by failing to extend him a qualifying offer. It's that simple.


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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 1:25 pm 
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J_C_Steel wrote:
If A.J. Burnett ends up pitching for the Orioles, then the Pirates made a mistake by failing to extend him a qualifying offer. It's that simple.


Yep. They offered him below 10 million :roll:


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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 1:54 pm 
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I've got to think the Pirates have tired of Burnett's antics. Otherwise, by the numbers, there isn't a good reason not to bring him back. There isn't a lot else out there to spend their money(and they DO have some money to spend) on.

On Polanco...I hope he starts the year as our RF. The other options don't get me excited, the team has proven they are ready to win, and they didn't upgrade the offense at all. This kid, by all accounts, is ready. Every player doesn't have to go through the traditional A, AA, AAA promotion cycle. If he's ready, then he is ready. If the Pirates were a .500 club or worse then I get saving a year for six years down the road. The Pirates were one game from being in the NL Championship series. You don't mortgage the future, for sure, but the time of prioritizing the future over the present is over. The future is now!


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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 2:12 pm 
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Its pretty simple. They are not paying Burnett 18% of their roster payroll, which is what he wants vis a vis the QF.

Its that simple. And I agree.

ZM

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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 2:14 pm 
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Dr. Phibes wrote:
Yep. They offered him below 10 million :roll:


Not surprising, it was already reported last month that the quality offer was $14M and Huntington publicly stated that it was too steep to invest in one player. I figured around $10M was the cap.


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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 2:33 pm 
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TheShark wrote:
Dr. Phibes wrote:
Yep. They offered him below 10 million :roll:


Not surprising, it was already reported last month that the quality offer was $14M and Huntington publicly stated that it was too steep to invest in one player. I figured around $10M was the cap.


Well, that is why they will enter the season with a pitcher that is not as good as AJ in the rotation while there is a stack of unused $ on Bob Nuttings desk. I really don't care about 'value' when the money is there to be spent to better the team without losing money.

Now if it is a situation where behind the scenes scenarios (AJ throwing fits or refusing to pitch out of the pen in game 5) causes them to sour on him, then that is a completely different situation.


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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 3:24 pm 
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ZelieMike wrote:
Its pretty simple. They are not paying Burnett 18% of their roster payroll, which is what he wants vis a vis the QF.

Its that simple. And I agree.

ZM


I don't. Pitchers are the best players to sign on one-year deals. Burnett would be a high percentage of the payroll... but only for a single season. That's perfect, and allows the team to have an excellent veteran pitcher for one year and then be free and clear.

The Pirates can't afford to sign a free agent to a long-term deal during which that player will take about 18% of the payroll. On that I agree. But on a one-year deal in a year that has seen an influx of cash into the organization, it seems like a solid investment.


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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 3:55 pm 
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The problem is, people will always want to bring AJ back on a one year deal until he sucks. And at that point, because he's being paid so much, you're screwed because you can't move him and can't afford a suitable replacement because you spent your budget early in the year instead of adding throughout.

They needed to cut ties sooner or later. At his age, with his lack of ability to maintain stuff deep into games, and the fact that all of our pitchers benefited from a defense that saved a ton of runs, fueled largely by an unsustainably great first half of defense, now's as good a time as any. He's not irreplaceable or a guarantee to maintain any of this success.

They can't fall into the trap of feeling like they've arrived and there's nowhere to go but up. Writers aren't calling us regression candidates because we've sucked forever so that's just what we do (most of the writers mention the next decade looks fantastic). They're calling us regression candidates because we are very much regression candidates even if every player from last year is brought back.

If they want writers to project more improvement, they'll need to get younger. Right now we have far too many guys that we're hoping plateau instead of tank. Not a lot of team-wide upside. You're looking at Cole, maybe Morton, Marte, Cutch, Pedro, maybe Walker as guys we can reasonably expect to improve due to age/experience. Everybody else we're just hoping doesn't fall off.

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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 4:25 pm 
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Not many would like to hear this, but I will add Tabata and Snider to the upside crowd because:

1. Tabata showed what he can do when healthy last fall
2. Snider was hurt again, and I saw just enough last year to think that "it" is in there, somewhere - and if his toe, etc. is healthy, he can certainly have a significant upside to what he showed.

ZM

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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 4:39 pm 
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Dr. Phibes wrote:
TheShark wrote:
Dr. Phibes wrote:
Yep. They offered him below 10 million :roll:


Not surprising, it was already reported last month that the quality offer was $14M and Huntington publicly stated that it was too steep to invest in one player. I figured around $10M was the cap.


Well, that is why they will enter the season with a pitcher that is not as good as AJ in the rotation while there is a stack of unused $ on Bob Nuttings desk. I really don't care about 'value' when the money is there to be spent to better the team without losing money.

Now if it is a situation where behind the scenes scenarios (AJ throwing fits or refusing to pitch out of the pen in game 5) causes them to sour on him, then that is a completely different situation.


Stack of $$s? Really? What makes you think it doesn't get invested elsewhere within the organization(other than the ridiculous myth that Nutting is "cheap")?

It has been proven time and again that Nutting and the Pirates do all they can to stretch every dollar they have in the organization. Simply throwing $14 Million at a 38 yr old pitcher whom the manager passed over for the 5th game of the Cards series (for a rookie) is just not good business. I could have told you that morning that AJ wasn't getting "market value" come FA time. You as a fan should be happy that the Pirates spend wisely, if fans were in charge we'd have a team full of 35+ players on 3-4 year contracts that would kill the franchise..... again!


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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 5:00 pm 
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ZelieMike wrote:
Not many would like to hear this, but I will add Tabata and Snider to the upside crowd because:

1. Tabata showed what he can do when healthy last fall
2. Snider was hurt again, and I saw just enough last year to think that "it" is in there, somewhere - and if his toe, etc. is healthy, he can certainly have a significant upside to what he showed.

ZM


I should have said established guys, I'm with you on those 2. Was meaning to talk about guys who we know for sure are viable, starting caliber ball players on a good team.

Definitely think those 2 you mentioned can improve, I just still see enough bust potential in them to be wary of lumping them in with the others as a "piece".

Obviously if some of the guys like Polanco, TSanchez, Taillon, Lambo/Decker/Tabata/Snider prove they can stick then it looks much brighter. Didn't mean to make it seem that barren, we have certain guys who can definitely improve but they haven't shown they belong yet.

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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 5:30 pm 
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Piratefan13 wrote:
Dr. Phibes wrote:

Stack of $$s? Really? What makes you think it doesn't get invested elsewhere within the organization(other than the ridiculous myth that Nutting is "cheap")?

It has been proven time and again that Nutting and the Pirates do all they can to stretch every dollar they have in the organization. Simply throwing $14 Million at a 38 yr old pitcher whom the manager passed over for the 5th game of the Cards series (for a rookie) is just not good business. I could have told you that morning that AJ wasn't getting "market value" come FA time. You as a fan should be happy that the Pirates spend wisely, if fans were in charge we'd have a team full of 35+ players on 3-4 year contracts that would kill the franchise..... again!


Yeah...when you have multiple holes on your MLB team, the ideal thing to do is spend money YOU DO HAVE TO FILL THOSE HOLES elsewhere. Good thinking. Laughable you throw in 'For a Rookie'....Cole was our best pitcher down the stretch. And 14 million is cheap for 'the 38 year old pitcher' that if he puts himself out there would of been one of the top 4 or 5 free agent pitchers on the market. And no, if I was in charge, we wouldn't have a roster full of old guys. But we would have a real 1B and SP instead of only half the platoon we had last year that underperformed to the point we were scrambling come the trade deadline.


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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 6:29 pm 
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It remains my opinion that there are many variables in play regarding the potential re-signing of AJ Burnett and money is only one of them.

I concluded a while back that he won't be back. And there is a large part of me that is absolutely fine with that.

In an ideal world, I'd like to see him stay in great shape, keep his arm strength up, sign a contract at about the All Star Break (if the Bucs are a potential playoff contender); get about 3-4 starts in the minors and the Bucs would have him for August and September with nearly no 2014 mileage on his arm.

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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 7:10 pm 
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Dr. Phibes wrote:
Yeah...when you have multiple holes on your MLB team, the ideal thing to do is spend money YOU DO HAVE TO FILL THOSE HOLES elsewhere. Good thinking. Laughable you throw in 'For a Rookie'....Cole was our best pitcher down the stretch. And 14 million is cheap for 'the 38 year old pitcher' that if he puts himself out there would of been one of the top 4 or 5 free agent pitchers on the market. And no, if I was in charge, we wouldn't have a roster full of old guys. But we would have a real 1B and SP instead of only half the platoon we had last year that underperformed to the point we were scrambling come the trade deadline.


But then we're right back where we started after this year with the same hole, just a year down the line. Or you're stuck with a player the caliber of James Loney on your team for 3 years with payroll tied up in him. Gotta fill these holes with long-term players at some point, can't keep trying to put a short-term band-aid over it like we've been doing for 20 years. We need to actually fix these things, not keep hoping for lightning to come into our bottle.

Especially since we have a crap ton of holes coming our way in the not too distant future. AJ or not, we have 3 SP, a RF, a 1B, a SS, and a C spot that need filled. So that's, at minimum, 3 premium positions that need filled (top of the rotation starter, C, SS). And we want to tie payroll up already on the 2nd least valuable position on the diamond.

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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 10:05 pm 
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The pitching is there. The catcher is there (maybe two) and the RF is there. These are not "gaping" holes.

ZM

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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 10:23 pm 
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ZelieMike wrote:
The pitching is there. The catcher is there (maybe two) and the RF is there. These are not "gaping" holes.

ZM


We think it's there but we have no evidence that Polanco, TSanchez, and the AAA pitchers will pan out. They might. They might not. If they don't, we're in a pinch. Maybe we figure out that Taillon just isn't likely to be more than a 4. That's fine, we need a 4 starter. But the price in free agency between a 2 starter (which we now need since Taillon can't fill that anymore) and a 4 starter is enormous.

We can't fill other holes until we know for sure what they'll be. It's why I think they might as well just try Lambo. Young guys will pan out and young guys will bust. Might as well throw a bunch into a wall and see which ones stick.

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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 10:48 pm 
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StarlingArcher wrote:
ZelieMike wrote:
The pitching is there. The catcher is there (maybe two) and the RF is there. These are not "gaping" holes.

ZM


We think it's there but we have no evidence that Polanco, TSanchez, and the AAA pitchers will pan out. They might. They might not. If they don't, we're in a pinch. Maybe we figure out that Taillon just isn't likely to be more than a 4. That's fine, we need a 4 starter. But the price in free agency between a 2 starter (which we now need since Taillon can't fill that anymore) and a 4 starter is enormous.

We can't fill other holes until we know for sure what they'll be. It's why I think they might as well just try Lambo. Young guys will pan out and young guys will bust. Might as well throw a bunch into a wall and see which ones stick.

5 years ago I would have agreed with you. 2 years ago I would have agreed. Not now. They are past the tryout stage. They are contenders. You don't plan your season because some are saying they have a bunch of regression candidates. The first base candidates do, for the most part, stink. NH gets paid to figure something out to improve our situation there. Lambo should be a very last resort. Heck, they may as well have kept Garrett Jones....

On the other point, it's true that some young guys make it and some don't. However, the Pirates have to be built through the draft. Because of this they have to plan with the assumption that they can count on Polanco, Taillon, and the top level prospects to pan out. In other words I disagree that you view RF as still being a hole. You have to pencil Polanco in there, at the latest June, and figure he's your guy.


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 Post subject: Re: Appears Burnett not coming back
PostPosted: Mon Dec 30, 2013 11:33 pm 
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StarlingArcher wrote:
We think it's there but we have no evidence that Polanco, TSanchez, and the AAA pitchers will pan out. They might. They might not. If they don't, we're in a pinch. Maybe we figure out that Taillon just isn't likely to be more than a 4. That's fine, we need a 4 starter.

I understand the point. Yes, Taillon may turn out to be a 175 IP, 4.10 ERA, 4.00 FIP, 150 K, 1.30 WHIP guy - which is what a good number 4 generally gives a team.

But what No. 4 do you know who deals at 97 mph with a hammer curve?


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