Trogluddite's recent post about the 2007 Pirates got me thinking about how many wins that team would get in terms of each players WAR today (or in the last season they pitched if they are currently retired). A replacement level team would get 48 wins. The WAR of each active player is multiplied by 1.6, since we are 101 games through the season.
Ronny Paulino = 0.8 WAR = 1.28 WAR/162
Adam LaRoche = 0.4 WAR = 0.64 WAR/162
Freddy Sanchez = 2.2 WAR = 3.52 WAR/162
Jack Wilson = 1.9 WAR = 3.04 WAR/162
Jose Bautista = 0.7 WAR = 1.12 WAR/162
Jason Bay = 1.7 WAR = 2.72 WAR/162
Nate McLouth = 2.1 WAR = 3.36 WAR/162
Xavier Nady (2008) = 4.0 WAR/162
Ian Snell = 0.6 WAR = 0.96 WAR/162
Tom Gorzelanny (2008) = -1.1 WAR/162
Paul Maholm = 2.5 WAR = 4 WAR/162
Zach Duke = 2.1 WAR = 3.36 WAR/162
Matt Morris (2008) = -0.4 WAR/160
Matt Capps = -0.6 WAR = -0.96 WAR/162
Shawn Chacon (2008) = -0.4 WAR/162
Salomon Torres (2008) = 0.4 WAR/162
John Grabow = 0 WAR
Damaso Marte = 1.2 WAR/162
So, overall, this would add 26.74, or about 27 wins to the 48 win replacement team. Meaning the Pirates would finish with 75 wins with this team, still under .500, and about to lose players to free agency.
Just for kicks I'm going to take the WAR of each player's career year with the Pirates.
Ronny Paulino = 2.6 WAR
Adam LaRoche = 2.5 WAR
Freddy Sanchez = 4.8 WAR
Jack Wilson = 4.3 WAR
Jose Bautista = 1.1 WAR
Jason Bay = 6.4 WAR
Nate McLouth = 3.6 WAR
Xavier Nady = 4 WAR
Ian Snell = 3.4 WAR
Tom Gorzelanny = 2.8 WAR
Paul Maholm = 2.7 WAR
Zach Duke = 3.3 WAR
Matt Morris = -0.4 WAR
Matt Capps = 1.6 WAR
Shawn Chacon = 0.2 WAR
Salomon Torres = 1.4 WAR
John Grabow = 0.5 WAR
Damaso Marte = 1.2 WAR
For a grand total of 46 WAR, or 94 wins, which would be enough to give them the NL wild card last year.
In conclusion, had the Pirates kept their players, based on the win values from Frangraphs, they would still be a below .500 time. And if they kept their players, and each had a career year, even though the odds are nearly impossible, they would still be a wild card team.
So in other words, yes, the Pirates have made the correct moves.