Troy Glaus Story has Pirate Fans in an Uproar

No matter what he does, the Pirates’ general manager can’t win.

Dave Littlefield, winter 2006: We’re not going to make a big splash in the free agent market; Jose Bautista and Jose Castillo will battle for the third-base job, Freddy will play second, Chris Duffy will be the savior in center field and Ronny Paulino will follow up his freshman year with a strong second season. The addition of Adam LaRoche should help the offense tremendously. If all goes well, we could finish around .500—enough to win the division.
Pirate fans: You idiot! Spend some money! Why didn’t you bring in Aubrey Huff! He’s a real stud!
Dave Littlefield, six months later: It’s pretty clear that our offense may need an upgrade, but I’m hesitant to trade any of our young starting pitchers without a better alternative ready to go. Ian Snell, Tom Gorzelanny, Paul Maholm and Zach Duke are at the heart of a talented rotation we can build around.
Pirate fans: Darn right! Don’t go trading anyone good! But you’d better make a move, and make it now! Go get A-Rod for a package of Romulo Sanchez, Marty McLeary and the Pirate Parrot! That’ll help the offense! Yeah, do that!
Dave Littlefield, present day: “Hey J.P., we have a shortstop that we’re looking to trade, and I know you need some infield help next year. I’ve heard too that Troy Glaus might be available. Both have contracts that are a little expensive. Can we build a deal around Wilson and Glaus?”
Pirate fans: You idiot! Quit trying to add talented players without giving anything up! Let us sulk, enjoying our miserable Pirates as-is! Acquiring players of a major-league caliber, what a silly thing to do!

Maybe it’s time to give it a rest. Littlefield finally had a plan entering the off-season, and he’s executing it now. Can’t we accept that as a legitimate start and move on?
Going into the hot stove, DL knew he needed a big, left-handed bat. He got one. DL knew he had a young core that had the potential to develop into something special. He didn’t bring in any Joe Randas to block the Freddy Sanchezes. DL knew that he had a decent starting rotation and a fair amount of depth at Triple-A, but he still needed one more cheap piece to buy some time for Burnett, Van Benschoten and Bullingon. He picked up Tony Armas.
After not inking Jeff Suppan to a four-year deal, DL knew that he had an extra $5-10 million in his bank account for a situation just like this. That cash was earmarked for a mid-season move, and now he’s trying to make one. Littlefield seriously believes that the Pirates are only a piece or two away from being a competitive ballclub in 2008, and I’m willing to give him a little rope (which, I’ll allow, he’ll probably use to hang himself).
I have no problem with Pittsburgh calling Toronto about Troy Glaus. Contrary to what’s being said on the message boards, Littlefield didn’t offer a straight-up deal. No way. Not even our remedial GM would believe that a defense-first shortstop could fetch a powerful third baseman with a career OPS of .860.
I wouldn’t be surprised if I heard that Littlefield had in mind something like Duke and Wilson, or Burnett and Wilson, or a similar deal involving another of our young arms that Toronto is known to covet in exchange for a bat they’ve been actively shopping.
The fans were annoyed the Pirates bought Cesar Izturis for a pittance as an upgrade over Don Kelly, and now they’re annoyed that Littlefield’s actually looking at bringing in a middle of the order presence that everyone admits we need.
DL’s not perfect—far from it—and he’s not a baseball genius. But at the same time, can someone please explain why the fans are so upset that Littlefield’s trying to make a move in the direction of winning?
I wasn’t always a Pirate apologist, but someone has to stand up for the team when most of my favorite Internet stomping grounds are throwing the team under the bus every chance they get.

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4 Responses to “Troy Glaus Story has Pirate Fans in an Uproar”

  1. Randy Says:

    If the asking price is Burnett and Wilson for Glaus, I’d pull that trigger awfully quick. Glaus has been around forever and turns 31 this August. Every full season he’s played in he has bopped 30 or more homers. Yeah, I’m concerned about his health, but does the club consider Jack or Sean to be in their long term plans? If not, then trade them for Glaus,

  2. DC Says:

    Your exactly correct in this post. Why not ask? Should he do nothing and nit ask?
    I don’t get it either. I’m glad he asked. He got rebuffed it happens everyday. Big deal. Never know until you try.

  3. Mike Says:

    The Pirates need offense and since the ownership seems to have no desire in drafting any high impact offensive players to finally look at acquiring one via trade is a step in the right direction.
    Of course, the trade was rejected, which is no surprise and even if accepted there is no chance Glaus would come here, but at least, if you believe the story Litllefield finally attempted to make a move. I hope he has some plan, but with the preplexing drafts that the Pirates have had in recent years, along with the idiotic free agent sigings (Burnitz, Randa, et al.) I tend to doubt it.

  4. Travis Says:

    I don’t blame DL for asking. Heck occasionally I agree w/ his moves (decent bullpen evaluation, good trade for LaRoche etc). I’m sure when DL inquired about Glaus they would have wanted at least Maholm involved in the deal.


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