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Dear Dave, Please Stop

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It's not surprising that the Pirates' best moves this offseason - the Mark Redman and Josh Fogg dumps - have cleared brush rather than planting seeds. To change metaphors, the Pirates' management doesn't have the intelligence or vision to build a ship that's seaworthy. The best we can hope for is that they put away their tools.

Case in point: the Pirates' fascination with Eric Byrnes:

In a perfect situation, which would require the Pirates fulfilling their final offseason goal of acquiring a right fielder who can hit for power, [Joe] Randa would hit sixth in the batting order.

Of course, for Randa to hit sixth, the Pirates would have to land said right fielder.

Byrnes, 29, appears to be their target.

Right, because it's not as if the Pirates have any rightfield options with more power than Byrnes.

Byrnes:

  1. .371 SLG
  2. .467 SLG
  3. .459 SLG
Career: .437 SLG

Craig Wilson:

  1. .421 SLG
  2. .499 SLG
  3. .511 SLG
Career: .488 SLG

In what possible respect is Byrnes a better power hitter than Wilson? Jim Tracy, do you have a bizarre statistic to share?

"He's a high-energy baseball player who tore up left-handed pitching in 2004," said Tracy of Byrnes.

Yes! Yes, that's true. Let's go with that.

Byrnes against lefties, 2004: 406/599/1004
Wilson against lefties, 2004: 375/537/912

There, see? Byrnes outhit Wilson against lefties in 2004. Now we can put the contract in the mail and go home, right?

Byrnes against lefties, 2005: 335/449/784
Wilson against lefties, 2005: 449/415/864

Oh... well, but that's just one year. What about other recent years?

Byrnes against lefties, 2003: 340/524/863
Wilson against lefties, 2003: 431/692/1122

Uh... how about for their careers?

Byrnes against lefties: 352/510/862
Wilson against lefties: 409/558/966

Okay, but that's just against left-handed pitching. What about overall?

Byrnes: 325/437/761
Wilson: 363/488/851

Okay, so Wilson's a better hitter. By a lot. But what about this?

Byrnes in June, career: 347/550/897
Wilson in June, career: 325/462/787

Ha! See? I just knew there was a statistic that proved my moronic and baseless opinion to be true!

Sarcasm aside, the notion that the Pirates just can't hit Randa sixth until they acquire Eric "Home Run Power" Byrnes and move Wilson to the bench is ludicrous on its face. Not only is Wilson a better hitter than Byrnes, he's clearly, head-smack-obviously better. Wilson is better against lefties, he is better against righties, he is better at home, he is better on the road, he is better during the day, he is better at night, he is better on turf, he is better on grass, he is better indoors, he is better outdoors. Wilson's better in a box, he is better with a fox, he is better in a house, he is better with a mouse. He's even better in a jam. Byrnes just hurts us, Sam-I-am.