It was a busy day for the Pittsburgh Pirates who reached a deal with starting shortstop Ronny Cedeno. It is evident that in 2011 the Pirates would rather not have Cedeno play the SS position for the Pirates, at least as an everyday starter. A candidate whose name has been mentioned on numerous occassions is JJ Hardy, who was tendered by the Minnesota Twins. Hardy has gathered considerable interest this winter.
Both the Twins and Bucs have worked out deals with their shortstops, this will allow the clubs some valuable time to put together a possible move of the player. It’s always a plus when a team has a solid number on the amount of payroll necessary to acquire the player in a trade. Cedeno’s deal has a club option for 2012 which is very advantageous in a trade. The Hardy deal won’t be a bank breaker and the Pirates could easily afford Hardy and Cedeno on the same roster, especially if you consider the number of positions Cedeno could play.
We think it’s a very smart move to get Cedeno under a deal. Especially the way the Pirates approached it by getting their name out in relation to Hardy and Bartlett.
Cedeno is a ballplayer, the guy plays baseball year-round. Perhaps that made an impact on his game down the stretch last year? Was he just wore out from the losing? Or was it the constant free swinging that made his arms tired? We think it was a combination of playing so many games/refusing to walk/and the impact of such an awful season. You saw with your own eyes that Cedeno made some very nice plays most of the season. Don’t forget those plays.
One interesting thought for us is this, Cedeno is an athletic guy that has played various positions in winter ball last year because Elvis Andrus manned the SS position. We always thought Cedeno could be an interesting super utility player, perhaps that is the same thought the Pirates organization has in 2011.
The bottom line is for the Pirates to improve in 2011, better defense is needed at the SS position if that means Cedeno is on the bench, it’s definently a good thing. If it took the Pirates acting like they wanted a different shortstop in order to get a better number from Cedenos’ guy, it’s an even better thing for the team.
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Cedeno as super-utility is an old concept for us.