Normally, I'm not a fan of free agent speculation, especially when the Pirates are involved, but I just read an article on mlb.com about how the Angels used the money they would have spent on Tex and it got me thinking a bit.
The article, (linked below) compares the 20 million the Angels were prepared to spend on Tex, and how they dispersed it instead to improve at multiple positions, something they might not have been able to do with the signing (Re-signed Rivera, went out and signed Abreu and Fuentes) and spent less than what it would have taken to sign Tex.
Obviously, the Pirates don't have a Tex they're trying to sign, but they do have about $20 million in saved cash from the trades.
One big name came to mind when I thought of the Pirates in this position: Carlos Delgado. He's coming off an injured year and he's old (Crazy thought, right?). This also means his market value will be lower, add in the fact that he's a prideful Puerto Rican who wears #21 for Clemente, has had an OPS lower than .800 only once in the past 13 years, and he's a lefty with that nice short porch in right, and might we be onto something?
It's a crazy idea I know, but it would let Jones try and play RF permanently and suddenly the Pirates have gone from a team with no power to a team with decent power. Pearce and Moss suddenly have their roles being support off the bench.
Bobby Abreu had a poor 2008 and signed with the Angels for 6.5 million. Now, the Angels are perrenial contenders every year. Is it safe to say Delgado would sign a 2 yr/ 18 million deal to play in Pittsburgh? I know that thought will make many cringe, and I can't blame you. In general I'm a fan of the moves Huntington would make and this would certainly go against the grain, but I think it could pay dividends to and help the Pirates turn the team around quicker.
In addition, given we assume the Pirates made that move and had 11 million in addition to spend: Spend maybe 4 million on Grabow and another 5 million on Polanco (Assuming we keep Andy at 3B). No, this doesn't help the team in the long run, which is the ultimate goal, but if NH is serious about the core being in place, adding three pieces like this and an additional couple million in arbitration raises and the Pirates could have a very useful 20 million payroll increase.
Thoughts? (Let the blood bath begin)