The Pittsburgh Pirates traded one of their more important veterans before the lockout went into place. Could they look to deal a few more veteran players?
Fans across Baseball are anxiously awaiting for Spring Training to begin. The Pittsburgh Pirates were supposed to be well underway with their Spring activities, but the team Owners have locked out the players over the CBA negotiations. The lockout is in place and now as fans, we have to wait for the two sides to come to some sort of agreement.
Before the lockout went into place, Major League Baseball’s hot stove was sizzling. There were quite a few teams who operated with much more haste than in previous offseasons. This included the Pittsburgh Pirates who made a significant trade right before the lockout became official.
In November, the Pittsburgh Pirates sent veteran catcher Jacob Stallings to the Miami Marlins. The deal was kind of surprising and came together pretty quickly with no solid rumors linking the two sides. I did think there was a chance for Stallings to be traded for the mere fact that he is on the wrong side of 30 and coming off a career year.
So could there be a couple more somewhat surprising trades that will occur? It is hard to say with the current state of Baseball. When the lockout ends teams are going to have to operate in an unusual fashion. Players will be expected to report to their Spring Training facilities. Meanwhile, there will be free agents who will be signing, and potential trades be completed that would have typically been done before Spring Training.
So who are a couple of veterans that could be dealt when the lockout does end? One player could be Kevin Newman. Newman is a solid shortstop and athlete but has not really posted numbers that would warrant keeping him around for the future. Also, consider the younger players who he would be taking time away from at the big league level. Players like Oneil Cruz, Michael Chavis, Hoy Park, Cole Tucker, Rodolfo Castro, and others down the line.
Another player who could find himself on the trade block would be Chris Stratton. Stratton is in a situation where he really does not move the needle for the Pittsburgh Pirates. However, he could help a contender deepen their bullpen heading into the season. Some even thought that he could have been dealt for this reason at the 2021 Trade Deadline.
The Bucs are not contenders and with Stratton being a free agent after the 2023 season the team could decide to hold onto him until the 2022 Trade deadline or even into the next offseason. However now could be the time to deal him, 2 years of team control, and coming off another strong season why risk him losing trade value over this season? Both, Chris Stratton and Kevin Newman are not moving the needle for the Bucs nor will he be a part of the future, so he should be under consideration.