The Neal Huntington Show recap

Pirates GM Neal Huntington Responds to Barry Larkin Comments


The Neal Huntington Show aired tonight before the Pittsburgh Pirates played for the first time on Sunday Night Baseball in 12 years.  Some comments were made by Barry Larkin and Greg Brown asked the Pirates GM about them.

Trib Pirates guru Rob Biertempfel wrote about Larkin’s comments three hours before the game.  Here is the link to Biertempfels article.

Huntington said he respects Larkin and everything he did on the baseball field and what he is doing since his playing days.  The Bucs GM talked about watching the NFL Draft and how he got caught up in listening to the experts making comments on the players the Steelers drafted.  Huntington talked about Kevin Colbert and Mike Tomlin and how nobody has more insight into the Steelers than the GM and coach of the Black n Gold.

It was interesting because Huntington said he found himself getting caught up in what the ‘experts’ were saying as fact.  Huntington started questioning the Steelers draft picks, but then caught himself and spoke of his respect for the Steelers management.

Here is what Larkin said about Polanco

“The question is, why?” Larkin said. “Is it because they don’t need an outfielder who can hit for power? Is it because (Jose) Tabata’s the guy? Why? Why? That’s the way the organization is run. It’s a financial issue. It’s a control issue. We get that.”  Read more:
Follow us: @triblive on Twitter | triblive on Facebook

As it related to the lack of a promotion for Polanco, Huntington remains defiant in his belief that more work is still needed in order for the outfielder to excel when he arrives in the big leagues.  The Bucs want to promote Polanco when he will provide a significant upgrade over what they are getting from right field.

Huntington went on to speak about how he trusts his staff and basically said he wants to prepare Polanco to come up and have a significant impact for a long time, not come up make a small impact possibly and then stagnate.   The Bucs GM spoke calmy as he addressed the comments by the Reds superstar and mentioned similar situations in the Pirates organization and throughout baseball where big time prospects have come up and then been sent back to the minors.  

The best quote from Huntington was when he just put it on the line.   What happens when Polanco comes up is going to be captivating and the bottom line is the buck stops with Huntington.  It’s on him.  And he said as much in what might be the best line about why Polanco is still in the minors.

If we don’t make the right decisions we won’t be here very long.  If we do make the right decisions we will give the fans a wining team and that’s what everybody wants.

The show also spoke about the Million Dollar Arm movie, wishes for Happy Mothers Day, and the decision to bring up Brent Morel this weekend when an outfielder was the move that seemed to make more sense.

Brent allowed Clint to play Josh Harrison wherever he wanted to.

One of the best lines regarding the Million Dollar Arm movie was when Huntington responded to Browns question about who would play him in the movie.

Huntington said, maybe a young Richie Cunningham?


We put this together quickly, if you have a question about the recap, just leave a comment below and we will review the tape and try and give you an answer.


Next Pirates Game View full schedule »
Friday, Aug 2929 Aug7:05Cincinnati RedsBuy Tickets

Tags: Pittsburgh Pirates

  • Macchamp74

    Anything about bringing up Morel instead of outfielder?

    • Tj Streib

      Huntington: “Brent allowed Clint to play Josh Harrison wherever he wanted to”

  • Tj Streib

    Really sick of hearing about Polanco – HE’LL BE HERE! Does everybody really want him leaving as a free agent a year earlier? (especially since he’s already showing signability issues). Championships are won in August & September. It’ll happen when it happens!

    I want to know if he can pitch, since starting pitching is the main reason the team is struggling.

    BTW – Polanco is 1 for his last 16, so maybe Huntington & Co. actually have a clue

    • Macchamp74

      Bringing Polanco up after April 20th was the cut off for extra year of control.
      If he was here last week, or 2 weeks ago…does not change free agent year.
      Only arbitration.

  • Lee Young

    NH can’t say “He’ll come up when the Super Two date has passed or we can be sued”. Therefore, he regurgitates the standard “He has things to work on”. What is so mysterious about that?

    • Tom Smith

      Thank you for your wisdom. I had no idea he couldn’t say it. That explains it!

  • Eric Scot

    Polanco will be called up when A. His Super Two status has passed. Teams can’t say that’s the reason for legal purposes. or B. If the Outfield was so decimated they had no choice. I will say that it shows a great lack of confidence for the team to sign Polanco long-term because they don’t want $10-15M extra for that 1 year if they brought him up prior to Super Two. That would blow their entire Free Agent/Trade Acquisition budget for that year.

    • Tj Streib

      Wil Myers was a great example last year of holding a guy back because of Super Two – Tampa made a late run & got to the playoffs anyway. We don’t need Polanco…. YET
      (unless of course, he can pitch)