Pittsburgh Pirates: Moves The Team Could Make Within Their Budget to Improve

These moves would be massive upgrades to the Pirates roster, and should be well within their budget.

Aug 21, 2023; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA;  Pittsburgh Pirates designated hitter Andrew McCutchen
Aug 21, 2023; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates designated hitter Andrew McCutchen / Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
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The Pittsburgh Pirates could make these moves, which would be well within their budget, and provide significant roster upgrades

This off-season has been pretty slow for the Pittsburgh Pirates, and coming off the season they just had, many were expecting them to capitalize on it more than they have thus far. Although we always hoped the Pirates would be significantly more aggressive than they were, it's not looking like that's going to happen. But there's still time to make moves and ones within the Pirates' budget that could still contribute to the team in a meaningful way.

Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette and Alex Strumpf of DK Sports both speculate that the Pirates will have a payroll of around $75-80 million. I'd say that both are reliable sources for Pirates news. As of right now, they have a payroll of $48,150,000, according to Spotrac (this amount includes Rowdy Tellez). However, that's before arbitration. MLB Trade Rumors estimate the Pirates will pay $16.28 million to four players in arbitration: Mitch Keller, David Bednar, Connor Joe, JT Brubaker, and Ryan Borucki. MLBTR is typically well within the ballpark with yearly arbitration figures. Last off-season, they projected the Pirates would pay $9 million in arbitration, and the Pirates ended up spending $9,012,500.

If MLB Trade Rumors' arbitration projections are accurate, which they typically are, that would mean the Pirates' current payroll is $64,430,000, give or take a few thousand. If the Pirates plan on having a payroll of around $75-80 million, that means they have between about $10.6-15.6 million left to work with, assuming the new TV deal has not changed their current budget situation. So, what kind of moves could the Pirates make to patch the remaining holes on the roster?

(Note that this is assuming if the Pirates make a trade, they don't shed any salary in a trade they make.)