Pittsburgh Pirates All-Time Lineup From the 20 Consecutive Losing Seasons

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PITTSBURGH – AUGUST 6: Outfielder Jason Bay #38 of the Pittsburgh Pirates waits on deck to bat against the Los Angeles Dodgers at PNC Park on August 6, 2005 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Pirates defeated the Dodgers 9-4. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH – AUGUST 6: Outfielder Jason Bay #38 of the Pittsburgh Pirates waits on deck to bat against the Los Angeles Dodgers at PNC Park on August 6, 2005 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The Pirates defeated the Dodgers 9-4. (Photo by George Gojkovich/Getty Images) /

The Outfield – Brian Giles, Jason Bay, Nate McLouth

We will lump the entire outfield together instead of going position by position. Part of this is due to having two left fielders in the outfield. Although, one could always roam right field. The three outfielders on this list are Brian Giles in left field, Nate McLouth in center field, and Jason Bay in right field. Bay is being moved to right field due to Giles, who ironically enough was traded for Bay, is in left field.

We will start with Giles, who is one of the most underappreciated hitters of his era. The Pirates acquired Giles from the Cleveland Indians in exchange for pitcher Ricardo Rincon in November 1998.

With the Pirates, Giles was a machine. He slashed .308/.426/.591 with a 156 wRC+ in nearly five full seasons with the Pirates. He hit 39 home runs in 1999, 35 in 2000, 37 in 2001, and 38 in 2002. His fWAR was 6+ in three of his four full seasons with the Pirates, and the one season it was not was 2001 when it was 5.5.

Maybe most remarkable as Giles walk and strikeout rates. He owned a 16.7% walk rate with the Pirates, and just a 10.9% strikeout rate. That is an incredible ratio for any hitter, but especially for a left-handed power hitter.

On August 26, 2003, Giles was traded to the San Diego Padres for Bay and starting pitcher Oliver Perez. This led to Bay putting together one of the best five year stretches in franchise history. This included Bay becoming just the second player in franchise history to be named the National League Rookie of the Year when he took home the award in 2004.

With the Pirates Bay slashed .283/.375/.515 with a 130 wRC+. He slugged 143 home runs, collected 320 extra base hits, was a two-time All-Star, he participated in the 2005 Home Run Derby, and he started in left field for the National League in the 2006 All-Star Game at PNC Park.

Bay’s Pirate career ended when former general manager Neal Huntington made the last second decision to trade Bay just before the 4 PM trade deadline on July 31, 2008. In a three team trade with the Boston Red Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers, the Pirates received outfield prospect Brandon Moss, third base prospect Andy LaRoche, and pitching prospects Craig Hansen and Bryan Morris for Bay. Other than Morris who had a good season out of the Pirate bullpen in 2013, none of these players would accomplish anything for the Pirates. Unfortunately, Huntington’s first major trade as Pirate GM went down as one of his worst.

Finally, in center field, there is Nate McLouth. The left-handed hitting McLouth started his career as a fourth outfielder, before easing into a more regular role starting in 2006. With the Pirates, McLouth was an All-Star in 2008. He also won a Gold Glove Award in 2008, and led the NL in doubles with 46. He posted a 3.8 fWAR in 2008 and this followed posting a 1.5 fWAR in 2007.

In June 2009, McLouth was traded to make room in center field for a guy named Andrew McCutchen. The Pirates received Charlie Morton and Jeff Locke from the Atlanta Braves, two starting pitchers who were key cogs in the Bucs making the postseason in three consecutive seasons from 2013 – 2015, they also received outfielder Gorkys Hernandez. Hernandez was traded to the Miami Marlins in 2012 in exchange for first baseman Gaby Sanchez who was a key player on the 2013 and 2014 teams, and Hernandez then returned to the Pirates as a fourth outfielder for 2015.

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Even after McLouth was gone, he helped contribute to the Pirates. The McLouth trade was one of the best that Huntington made as Pirate GM.

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