How Much Cash Can The Pirates Afford To Waste?
By Tom Smith
The Pittsburgh Pirates lost 105 games in 2010. It’s interesting to see the Pirates leadership put their neck on the line yesterday, after firing John Russell as their manager. Unfortunately, it’s a little late for John Russell isn’t it? It’s also a little late for the fans. Most importantly, it’s much too late for the Pirates young players to make an impact on 2010.
A quote yesterday morning by Pirates General Manager Neal Huntington had him stepping up as he usually does when the Pirates have bad news to share with their fans:
"“The true accountability and, arguably, the majority of the accountability lies with myself and/or the rest of the baseball operations.” —Huntington after the firing of Pirates Manager John Russell"
Then yesterday afternoon this quote from Frank Coonelly was written by Dejan:
"“…..the responsibility for our failure this season rests with the entire leadership team and, therefore, that responsibility rests squarely with me.”–Coonelly after the firing of Pirates Manager John Russell."
While the two men at the top of the Pirates leadership chain argue who is most responsible for the Pirates failure, the bottom line is the decision to extend JR this past offseason has come back to bite Bob Nutting. The Pirates owner will be paying nearly $500,000 for John Russell to not work in 2010, it’s starting to become a trend. It’s a wasteful trend that Bob Nutting, and any business owner for that matter, despises.
Joe Kerrigan wasn’t inexpensive and neither was Gary Varsho. The highest paid player in a Pirates uniform this year, Aki Iwamura was a huge waste of cash. Perry Hill just wanted success on the diamond and the defense looked pathetic without his tutelege this year. There are more examples of waste that probably pissed you off as well.
These outlays of cash with no return on investment are starting to add up. It’s not like the Pirates aren’t liquid right now, but flushing cash money down the drain simply isn’t wise. Some will say mistakes are part of the business and there is no question about that, but costly mistakes will continue to handcuff this cash limited franchise.
It only seems rational to believe that the more cash that is wasted, the less cash there will be available to improve the Pirates in 2011.
It’s not our cash, so some of you will say why the hell do you care, well, because it’s our team.