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Pirates have had interest in Eric Chavez

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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Pirates have had interest in Eric Chavez, Jon Heyman reports. Chavez is, somehow, still a pretty good player -- he isn't the defensive whiz he once was, but he did hit .281/.332/.478 for Arizona last year, and it was the second straight year he's hit well.

Chavez is left-handed, and he obviously won't be starting ahead of Pedro Alvarez. So if the Pirates really are interested in him, they would probably use him against righties. They could use him at first, or (and this is less likely) use him at third and move Alvarez across the diamond. Gaby Sanchez would start at first base against lefties.

Our data on Chavez as a first baseman is limited, but I'm guessing he would be decent there. Chavez might also be fairly cheap, since he's a veteran, and he played as a bench guy last year and only made $3 million. Signing Chavez could give the Pirates a good first-base platoon and allow them to spend money elsewhere. Given Chavez's age (36) and injury history, there's a risk of complete collapse here, but this is one of the more inspired ideas I've heard about addressing the first-base issue, and I hadn't even considered it.