Pittsburgh Pirates: 2017 Outlook on Competing So Far

Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /
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Pittsburgh Pirates
Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

Editorial: The Pittsburgh Pirates had a bridge year in 2016.  At the beginning of this off-season, there were questions around whether or not 2017 would also be.  The question seems to have an answer.

Early in the off-season, there was not much in terms of rumors surrounding the Pittsburgh Pirates.  The only rumors that fans heard entering the Winter Meetings, were that Andrew McCutchen seemed destined to be dealt to the Washington Nationals. The proposed deals saw a lot of young major league players and prospects coming back in the deal.  Many viewed this as the Bucs preparing for a little bit of a rebuild, and the club having another down season.  However, the deal did not happen and the Chicago White Sox instead got the haul of young, controllable pitching.

Many fans started to wonder if there would be any other team that would help the Bucs rebuild by dealing for Cutch.  The Nationals seemed the perfect fit.  Then at the Winter Meetings, the front office put down the rumors.  Neal Huntington and staff suggested that they were not actively shopping Cutch, but rather being approached by others.  With the Nationals out of the picture, Huntington stated that a deal seemed unlikely.  Still many are questioning if Cutch will be here in 2017, and furthermore if the Pittsburgh Pirates are serious about contending.