Fangraphs has an interesting article up that helps back up managements claim that our young talent stacks up against just about any team in the league. It basically shows the top pre-arbitration eligible guys at each position. Not surprisingly the Pirates have 3 of the top position guys in Andrew McCutchen, Neil Walker, and Pedro Alvarez (no other team has more than 1) and they say that Tabata and McDonald didn't miss the cut by much for their respective positions.
Here's the pirate relevant quote:
Three(!) Pirates in the starting lineup, and Jose Tabata didn’t miss by much (neither did James McDonald, on the pitching side). We’re approaching 20 years since Barry Bonds left and the Pirates last enjoyed an above-.500 season. That streak could end fairly soon.