Pittsburgh Pirates Rumors: Post-Christmas Quintana Update


Now that Christmas has passed, the MLB rumor mill should start back up.  Heading into the Holiday, the hot topic was whether or not the Pittsburgh Pirates would acquire Jose Quintana.

Over the last few days, the rumor mill has been slow.  This is mainly because it was the holidays.  Being it is in the middle of the off-season, many team’s personnel and MLB writers take time off.  They have been non-stop working since the season’s end, and deserve a few days to celebrate and spend time with family.  Even the big insiders have not done much reporting.  Ken Rosenthal tweeted that he was taking time off, and has not tweeted anything since.  Jon Heyman tweeted, but it was about the holidays and football.  However, fans never sleep when there are big rumors.  Over the last few days, Pittsburgh Pirates fans especially, have been on edge waiting for any tidbit of news regarding the pursuit of Jose Quintana.  Now that the holidays are over, the team’s front office people and MLB insiders will start to get back to work.

With that, some Jose Quintana news finally came out this morning.  Unfortuneatly, it was not what Pittsburgh Pirates fans were hoping for.  Bob Nightengale, of USA Today, tweeted that another team has stepped up their pursuit of the White Sox lefty pitcher.  Nightengale tweeted:

"“The #Yankees have expanded their Jose Quintana talks with #Whitesox that would include closer David Robertson, if Sox eat part of contract”"

On one hand, this seems very possible.  The Yankees are looking to upgrade their pitching staff.  Quintana would help solidify their rotation.  Meanwhile, if they acquired Robertson, they would have a really dominant back-end of the bullpen.  Also, the Yankees have the prospects to make this deal happen.  However, there has been contradicting reports.  Just last week, some other insiders reported that the Yankees were not willing to part with top prospects for Quintana.  The Yankees have worked hard to build up their farm system.

More from Rum Bunter

The Yankees are trying to take the approach of building through the farm and being a younger team.  Their top prospects were specific players they targeted when trading away big chips Andrew Miller and Aroldis Chapman. Yankees top prospects are Gleyber Torres, Clint Frazier, Justus Sheffield, and Blake Rutherford. The first three they specifically got in trades, while Rutherford was their 2016 first round pick. For the Yankees to go and flip the big prospects they just acquired would be very counterproductive to their new approach.

Unless the Yankees take on the full money owed to Robertson, and are able to give up less in value because of it, a deal will not happen. Meanwhile, the White Sox would not trade Quintana to help dump off Robertson’s salary, but rather maximize Quintana value in a deal.  Likewise, the White Sox have no motivation to eat money on Robertson’s deal in a Quintana trade.  They should be able to acquire significant talent for Quintana without having to get financially creative with an additional piece.  The good news is that these rumors were just put down by New York insider Joel Sherman.  While writing this Joel Sherman just tweeted:

“Checked with few folks and #Yankees are not working on a deal that involves Quintana/Robertson #Whitesox

Nothing against Bob Nightengale, as he is a well respected baseball writer, but Joel Sherman is one of the best insiders in around.  Sherman is a writer for the New York Post, and would have the inside track on all Yankees and Mets news.  Not only that, but he also in general has more sources than most baseball writers.  He is in the same category as Jon Heyman and Jon Morosi. He typically does not put stuff out there unless he feels certain about it.  Sherman also tweets that the Yankees do not want to add significant payroll, adding close to 20 million in 2017 between Robertson and Quintana would not match the report.

Meanwhile, Pittsburgh Pirates fans, there is some news on the Pirates pursuit of Jose Quintana.  Bob Nightengale also tweeted that the Pittsburgh Pirates remain in pursuit of Quintana among other teams.  He tweeted:

“The #Yankees and #Pirates currently most aggressive teams in talks with #Whitesox about Quintana, and, yes, even discussed potential 3-way”

Next: Three Trade Proposals

We have heard the three team rumors before.  Many have suggested it could be McCutchen going to the Yankees.  This seems to be a stretch and a dream theory.  More likely it could be the Pittsburgh Pirates sending Tony Watson to help complete the Yankees bullpen, and cheaply.  Nightengale also lists Rangers and Astros as teams who have had interest.  Also of note, Bruce Levine, a MLB radio host and writer in Chicago, confirmed that the Pirates remain as one of the top suitors.

Hope everyone had a great holiday, and here is to hoping even more that the Pittsburgh Pirates acquire Jose Quintana for the New Year!