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News Roundup: Huntington: We Acquired Milledge Because We Could

MLB - New York Mets/Pittsburgh Pirates Box Score Thursday July 2, 2009 - Yahoo! Sports
Garrett Jones came within a single of the cycle today.

Huntington answers fans' questions | News
An unusually blunt answer from Neal Huntington:

Why trade an outfielder for an outfielder when we need middle infielders? -- Josh J., Bethel Park, Pa.

Huntington: Because Milledge was available. He was a premier prospect in baseball (the No. 1 prospect with Mets in 2005-06) with five tools. He has a very high ceiling. At 24 (Morgan is 29), Milledge is still young and can develop into an above-average Major League player.

It'll be interesting to see how Huntington's behavior will change when (or if) the Pirates acquire enough talent to shape into a good team. The Rays' transition from merely acquiring talent to aiming to contend happened extremely quickly--their 2007 team was a collection of mismatched parts, but with one big trade (the Delmon Young / Matt Garza deal) and a couple of positional changes, they suddenly became one of the best teams in baseball. The Pirates are still very much in the mismatched-parts stage, which is as it should be for now and probably for the next two years or so.

Taiwan Baseball: Pirates on a Roll....Sheng-Chin Hung Signed
In addition to Ping-Hung Chi, whose signing hit the news a few days ago, the Pirates have also signed pitcher Sheng-Chin Hung and first baseman Chi-Wei Hsu from Taiwan. Of the three, Hung may have the most upside. He can hit 91 MPH with his fastball and also throws a curve and change.

Kiley McDaniel Liveblog
Baseball Prospectus reports that the Pirates are one of two teams (along with the Royals) in on Dominican prospect GianCarlos Santana, brother of the Angels' Ervin Santana. The younger Santana recently threw as hard as 91 MPH. Also, the Cardinals signed outfielder Wagner Mateo, one of the big prizes of this year's Dominican class.

Lynchburg 9, Winston-Salem 5
Eric Fryer, recently acquired in the Eric Hinske deal, went 1-for-2 with a walk and two runs scored in his Lynchburg debut. Also, Jamie Romak just realized he knows how to hit Class A+ pitching.

Donald Veal: Stats
Donald Veal now has twelve walks in 12.7 innings at Class AAA Indianapolis. He'll probably still be with the Pirates at the end of the year thanks to these "rehab" shenanigans, but it's becoming increasingly clear to me that he's not really a prospect.

Is this thing on?: A must see Snell video and my All-Star ballot
Indianapolis announcer Scott McCauley picks his International League All-Star team.

The Canadian Press: Canadian left-fielder Jason Bay becomes American citizen
Jason Bay became a naturalized U.S. citizen today.