A commenter at a Pirates message board asks an interesting question: might it be better to keep Craig Wilson and Kip Wells for now, let them play out the rest of the season, and then offer them arbitration? Both players probably want to leave and therefore wouldn't accept arbitration, and if they did, they probably wouldn't get much more than they're getting now. And if they left, the Pirates could collect draft picks that could potentially be more valuable than whatever they might end up getting for these players at the trading deadline. I highly doubt the Pirates would actually do this - they're too cheap - but I think it might be a smart strategy right now, depending on what offers are currently on the table.
Dave Littlefield is, at this point, offering no hope that he has learned anything from his debacles at previous trading deadlines - he has about a half dozen players he should consider trading, and none have been moved yet. He has yet again provoked complaints that he is making unreasonable demands of other teams. These demands are very likely to force him into a corner yet again, where he'll probably yet again get Ty Wigginton instead of Ryan Howard. Apparently, he is now trying to get the Yankees to take Jeromy Burnitz' contract off his hands in a trade for Craig Wilson; when the Angels asked about Wilson, Littlefield reportedly demanded a prospect and a major-league ready player. If any of the reports coming out are accurate, Littlefield's trading strategies are not helping the Pirates, and in the end he's likely to wind up with very little. So maybe the best thing to hope for is that he does nothing, then collects some draft picks. What do you think?