Top 5 Best Trades in Pittsburgh Pirates History
By Steve Kubitz
Oct 7, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates right fielder Marlon Byrrrd (2) reacts after being called out on strikes against the St. Louis Cardinals during the second inning in game four of the National League divisional series at PNC Park. The St. Louis Cardinals won 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
- August 27, 2013: Pirates receive Marlon Byrd and John Buck from the Mets for Dilson Herrera and Vic Black.
2013 was a magical season for the Pirates. Coming off back to back collapses, many were weary of the contending Pirates, but they silenced a lot of doubters by winning 94 games and an incredible NL Wildcard game. The Pirates right field production for most of 2013 left a lot to be desired, which is why the addition of Byrd was so pivotal for the team. While his tenure with the Pirates was short, he was a huge contributor to the first Pirates playoff team since 1992. John Buck was mostly a throw in for the Pirates, but honestly Byrd alone makes this trade a win for the Pirates.
Marlon Byrd only played 30 regular season games for the Pirates, but from game one, it was clear he was going to help carry the Pirates into the post season. He homered in his first game with the Pirates and kept hitting from there. In his short time with the Pirates he hit three home runs and slashed .318/.357/.486/.843/137OPS+. He also kick started the 2013 NL Wildcard game by homering in the second inning, igniting the crowd and setting up the now famous “Cueto Cueto Cueto.”
John Buck was a back up catcher and really didn’t play much for the Pirates. He played in nine games with the team, so really his contributions don’t factor in much in this trade, but he was involved and did a solid job, albeit a very brief job.
The Pirates gave up two very solid prospects to land Byrd and Buck. Dilson Herrera is likely the Mets starting second baseman of the future and Vic Black has a big arm and has been solid in his brief time with the Mets. The jury is still out on this trade from the Mets perspective, but for the Pirates, they got the right fielder they needed for a playoff run and that is about as good as it gets from a rental player.
2013 was the first playoff run for the Pirates since 1992 when the Pirates won their third straight NL East title, while this man wasn’t there in 1992, he was a huge piece of the 1990 and 1991 teams. Number two on our list is…
Next: Number 2