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Positive words on Colin Moran, others from Gerrit Cole trade

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Houston Astros v Baltimore Orioles Photo by Mitchell Layton/Getty Images

*Peeks into the room*

*Slowly enters*

Mind a little ... positivity? Has it been long enough?

I’m not trying to change anyone’s minds. I’m not entirely convinced by the more optimistic aspects of the trade returns of the last few days, myself. But we should probably start to talk about the new guys at some point.

CRPerry13 over at The Crawfish Boxes did a deep dive into the Gerrit Cole deal, including a lot he likes about the guys headed to Pittsburgh.

He emailed me not just to plug his piece, but because he’s just really enthusiastic about the guys the Pirates got. His piece doesn’t exactly lament the loss of Colin Moran, Joe Musgrove, Michael Feliz and Jason Martin. He’s also pleased in what Houston didn’t give up. But the out-of-town perspective can help. Pittsburgh can certainly be a toxic place at times like these — and I get that.

Reportedly, the Pirates favored the deal from a “quantity over quality” standpoint, but that cliché downplays what these players currently are and what they could be. Musgrove, Moran, and Feliz were all national Top 100 prospects (Top 50 in Musgrove and Feliz’ cases), and both Musgrove and Feliz came off the list due to major league eligibility, not because they lacked development.

Next, Jeff Sullivan at FanGraphs detailed Moran’s swing change and fly-ball approach. It’s similar to a lot of Major League-level success stories from 2017. J.J. Cooper at Baseball America went into that as well.

I don’t really consider PNC Park’s right field a “short porch,” as many call it; rather, it’s just not incredibly far, far away from home plate, as left field is. But Moran could indeed see a resurgence in Pittsburgh.

Here’s more about his approach going into 2017.

Finally (and Wilbur touched on this), Kiley McDaniel, also at FanGraphs, analyzed the Pirates’ moves. The whole thing’s worth reading, but I was particularly interested in gathering more information about the returnees, which McDaniel has provided.

I’m not going to make you read all this right now, but it’s there when you’re ready for it.