The Pittsburgh Pirates are likely preparing for the Major League Baseball Draft. However, the MLB Trade Deadline is not far behind.
The Major League Baseball Trade Deadline has always been one of the more interesting times of the year for Pittsburgh Pirates fans. Over the years we have seen the team be sellers much more than buyers. This will once again be the case this year as the Bucs are on pace for another losing season.
The team has been in sell-off mode over the last 3 years. With the new Front Office taking over in Winter 2019, they immediately started to sell off veteran pieces. The Starling Marte trade was the first significant move made by Ben Cherington. He also would trade veteran starting pitchers, Jameson Taillon, and Joe Musgrove.
The thing about all of those deals was that they came during the offseason. Ben Cherington was relatively quiet during the Trade Deadline in 2020. The only move he made was trading away veteran outfielder Jarrod Dyson to the White Sox for International Bonus money.
The 2021 Trade Deadline was much different for the new Front Office. At this point, the rebuild had been underway for over a year and the hope was that this would be the last Trade Deadline that the Pittsburgh Pirates would really be looking to sell off as much as possible. This time they had a chance as many of their veteran players were having productive seasons.
The first two “sell” trades the Pittsburgh Pirates made at last year’s deadline were both with Organization for their whole careers. Cherington first dealt Adam Frazier to the San Diego Padres in exchange for Tucapita Marcano, Jack Suwinski, and Michell Miliano. This trade was followed up by a deal with the Yankees. The deal sent Clay Holmes to New York and Diego Castillo and Hoy Park back to Pittsburgh.
Those were two of the biggest trades the Pittsburgh Pirates made last summer. They would also trade away Tyler Anderson to the Mariners, minor league pitcher Braeden Ogle to the Phillies, and veteran reliever Richard Rodriguez to the Braves. Coming back in those deals were an assortment of mid-level prospects with the exception being Bryse Wilson coming from the Braves.
Now the team did make some moves to bring in some upside talent as well. They made a small and at the times surprising trade with the Red Sox. The Bucs traded left-handed reliever Austin Davis to the Red Sox in exchange for former first-round pick Michael Chavis. The team also acquired pitcher Dillion Peters a week before the deadline in a trade with the Angels.
This year’s trade deadline should be another somewhat active one for the Pittsburgh Pirates. The difference is that the team needs to move some of the veterans so they can recall some of the young promising talent fans have seen already. Players like Tucupita Marcano, Cal Mitchell, Travis Swaggerty, and others would all likely find their way back into the lineup. At the end of the day, those are the players that matter going forward. Trading away veterans like Kevin Newman and Ben Gamel would open the door for them.