A few notes for Tuesday:
-P- A thought I had early this week: As we head into the offseason, keep in mind that the Pirates' 13th overall draft pick will rule them out of the possibility of signing any free agents who have qualifying offers attached. They don't usually sign such players anyway, but this year they almost certainly won't, since the first ten picks are protected, and the Bucs have one of the most valuable picks that isn't. The top-tier player to whom they'll be connected most strongly will likely be Ivan Nova, who can't be extended a qualifying offer, so this doesn't affect him.
-P- Rob Biertempfel reports on the Pirates' seemingly pointless decision to place Starling Marte on the DL:
"He's missed a large majority of (September), unlike some of the other guys like (Francisco) Cervelli, who are banged up," Huntington said. "We felt it was useful for a variety of reasons to note that he went on the DL."
The unspoken message to Marte could be that the front office is disappointed he didn't get into the lineup more often last month. Marte made attempts to play in September, but each was aborted when he complained his back flared up again.
There was no identifiable procedural reason for Marte to be on the DL, since the move didn't clear roster space for anyone, so the idea that the Pirates were trying to send Marte a message makes sense.
-P- From the same piece, it sounds like the Bucs will pursue starting pitching this winter.
"It's definitely one of the conversations we've already initiated," Hurdle said, "whether it be Nova or somebody else of that ilk."
It's highly unlikely the Pirates will sign Nova, unfortunately, and the free agent market for starting pitching is weak. It's possible the Bucs could turn to the trade market, or they could have someone in mind as a reclamation project.