and I'm okay with that. I'm looking at MLBTradeRumors.com summary of the Winter Meetings and I would argue (if for no other reason than to pass time until spring training) that boring was good for the Pirates. Why? Let me count the ways....
* The Pirates did relatively little, but so did most other teams. The Astros, Brewers, Yankees, and Mariners were very active, a few other teams made limited moves. One of the more active teams was the Mets, who have been signing stopgap players - much like the Pirates did back in '03 when signing Joe Randa and Sean Casey because we literally had no one to play 3B or 1B. No one signed Jason Bay. No one traded (yet) for Doc Holiday or Dan Uggla or Roy Halladay.
* What the Pirates did is consistent with what other teams did. This tells me that our front office is not getting snookered as in the past. The Bobby Crosby uber-utility man signing is consistent with the Tigers signing Adam Everett or the Mariners signing Corey Patterson to a minor league deal or the Phillies signing Ross Gload. Signing Vinnie Chulk is roughly equivalent to the Astros signing Gary Majewski or the Red Sox signing Fabio Castro or Scott Atchison.
* The Pirates transactions met real needs, not PR (public relations) needs. We need bullpen depth. We need better bench players. We addressed these needs and did so in a prudent manner.
* The Pirates didn't do anything stupid. Want to re-sign Brian Giles for old-times sake? Check out his stats with the Padres last year. Want to trade some prospects for Ollie Perez? Didn't do it, wouldn't be prudent. Want to pick up a "name player" with baggage - Milton Bradley, Pat Burrell, or Luis Castillo - just to show that you're serious about spending money? Nope. None of that either.
Did we pull out a "magic wand" and solve all of our problems for next year? No, but there is no magic wand. Let's say the Pirates offered Andy Pettitte or Brad Penny or Randy Wolfe a contract equivalent to those signed. Do we realistically expect that any of those players would sign with the Pirates? Unfortunately, money is not everything for some players and I would argue that these players would not sign with the Pirates (this year) even if we did mortage the future.
Thoughts? Comments? Beer?