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St. Louis vs. Pittsburgh, 13 June 2006

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7:05 PM, FSNP, KDKA

Chris Carpenter (4-3, 2.83) vs. Oliver Perez (2-7, 7.18).

Not this guy again. (I mean Carpenter, not Perez.)

Some news:

-P- Chris Duffy is returning to the Pirates organization.

-P- Jason Bay now ranks sixth among National League outfielders in all-star voting.

-P- John Perrotto thinks the Pirates should sign Sean Casey to an extension:

The Pirates, though, do have a need at first base.

They have no desire to re-sign Craig Wilson when he becomes a free agent after the season and the feeling is mutual. Brad Eldred suffered a season-ending broken arm in April at Class AAA Indianapolis...

Eldred is old for a prospect. He turns 26 next month. To put it in perspective, Eldred is only six months younger than St. Louis superstar first baseman Albert Pujols.

The Pirates' only other first-base prospect of note is Steven Pearce. He is playing at high Class A Lynchburg.

Thus, the Pirates don't have many alternatives and it makes sense for them to work out an extension with Casey.

This line of reasoning is, I think, probably very close to what the Pirates are actually thinking, and it's very typical of their lack of planning and imagination. There aren't any good alternatives to Casey in the organization - so? The Pirates can still grab a free agent. The options there aren't great - Shea Hillenbrand and Aubrey Huff are probably the best - but they're out there. Also, the Pirates could make a trade. Or they could grab someone like Eduardo Perez and find someone to platoon with him.

My point is that there are lots of options, and there's no reason for the Pirates to lock themselves into a contract with an unathletic, injury-prone player in his 30s who's very likely to get too much money because he's nice. There is no reason to address this situation now.

If, on the other hand, it's true that the other options aren't palatable, why didn't the Pirates know this when Craig Wilson was begging for a contract this offseason?