Pirates Spring Training Countdown: Doumit Doomed


Coming into the 2010 campaign

a big question mark was could Ryan Doumit stay healthy.  In 2010, Ryan Doumit played in 124 games, the most of his career.  A lot of it wasn’t pretty and questions lingered about his return from a wrist injury suffered in 2009.

Doumit injured his right wrist.  It can cause players to lose some bat control.  It can cause a loss of power.  It has certainly had a negative impact on Doumit.  Players have overcome wrisit injuries in the past, but we think the Pirates feel Doumit isn’t one of those players.  They would know, Doumit has been a Pirate forever.

Pirates fans have been waiting for Doumit to return to his juicy 2008 –the year when he popped a .367OBA,  the year his line looked like this: .318/.357/.501.  But think about this, some doctors I spoke with today feel it can take up to 18 months for an injury like Doumits’–the scaphoid bone– to be entirely healed.

Prior to his  2009 season, Doumit signed a three-year, $11.5 million extension.   The deal paid Doumit $3.55 million  in 2010 and will pay $5.1M in 2011. It also has team options for 2012 and 2013 that total $16 million dollars.

How the Pirates move or use Doumit is going to be one of the critical decisions made by the Pirates front office in 2011.  It wasn’t hard to debate just how awful his 2010 season was, but a Major League GM was going to take a shot at Doumit.  We could just feel it.

But then we logged on to the Pirates website  and nearly shit our pants.  Neal Huntington was not quoted in the story by Jen Langosch, but the sentence was still shocking.  Even if Doumit outplays Snyder in Spring Training, Snyder is the starting catcher. 

Okay.  You know that.  I know that.  But why does that information need to be in print?  And why would it be the top story, on the front page, centered, of the Pittsburgh Pirates website?

It hurts what little value Ryan Doumit has left.  It impacts the ability of the Pirates to move Doumit for a fair return.  The Bucs have now admitted he won’t start…even if he morphs into Brian McCann in Bradenton, Florida next month.

The subject of Doumit’s trade value was discussed in detail last season.  But we still believe a GM could make an error in evaluating Doumit.  But now it’s quite obvious the Pirates don’t have faith, or see any value in him.

As has been well documented, Doumit’s injury is the sort that can frequently cause players to lose power and bat control. However, it’s not like his career is doomed–it just seems done in Pittsburgh.   But remember big time players have recovered from serious wrist injuries  to regain their power stroke.   The man  named AGo certainly jumps into our minds.  What a talent.

It would be easy to say that Ryan Doumit doesn’t have anything left.  You can name several players the Pirates have entirely given up on recently.  Maybe rival GM’s are just waiting for the Bucs to give up again and they can swoop in on Doumit?

Doumit’s on-field performance in 2010 did nothing to improve his value this hot stove season.  It was bad.  But having front page center details on his future at Pirates.com won’t create much good.

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