Dave Cameron wrote a post over on USS Mariner which was critical of Seattle's inaction this off-season. It seems to me that if you substitute some of the particulars you have a fairly apt critique of the Pirates work thus far this winter.
The Pirates project to be about a 72 win team, the Mariners about 75. As Cameron points out there's generally team that outplays such projections as result of luck or a number players exceeding expectations, etc. Were the Pirates to exceed the 72 win projection by say 5 games so that their current squad projected to win 77 games, the addition of Edwin Jackson (and his 3.8 WAR) might mean that they then would have a reasonable chance of finishing around 500.
This shouldn't be the goal because it would finally erase the losing streak but because as Cameron points out there's real value to striving for relevancy and at least remaining on the fringes of contention deep into the season. In terms of increased attendance and revenue but also because I think it's important for the Pirates to build on the improvement they made from 2010 to 2011. This shouldn't of course be at the expense of what they're building towards in 2013 and onward. But they seem to have little interest, at least from the information available to the public, in making cost effective improvements to the 2012 team, which wouldn't at all undermine the rebuilding process.