As I write this article on Friday afternoon, I realize the risk I’m taking in dedicating an article to the potential transpiring of a trade involving Jameson Taillon. With how the Pirates’ front office has moved thus far this offseason, it could be the case that Taillon has already been traded before this article is scheduled to go live Sunday. Alas, if you’re reading this, Taillon is still a Pirate – for now.
Much has been made recently about whether or not Taillon will get moved. Increasingly, all signs point to “probably.” You’ve got this article from Rum Bunter talking about trade rumors surrounding the right-hander; there’s this one from Yanks Go Yard about the potential for a fit in the Bronx; there’s probably more to come.
With the recent departures of Joe Musgrove and Josh Bell, it’s evident that the Pirates are in rebuilding mode – something that writers have been trumpeting for months, but something that the organization is reluctant to admit. When Cherington said that four prospects in the top 100 isn’t enough, it was evident that he still plans on moving more assets.
For a while, I was certain it was going to be Adam Frazier who was dealt first, but that didn’t pan out. Now he seemingly won’t even be the one moved third. There’s nothing concrete about Taillon being dealt, certainly, and holding onto him might garner a bigger return – but that’s the same line of thinking I brought to Bell and we all know how that turned out.
It seems Cherington and Co. are less interested in playing the waiting game, which can be fraught with potential downsides, and are instead opting to move players now – regardless of maximizing potential returns – in order to ensure that they receive something. That’s an understandable position, given that the organization needs to begin acquiring talent to fill out the farm system quickly if they hope to put talented players around the blossoming key pieces in the next few years.
At this point, it seems to be only a matter of time before Taillon and others are dealt. We’ve mentioned it ad nauseam: For many of the “older” players, they don’t provide much value in sticking around. It’s clear there’s no immediate window of contention for this club, so holding onto veterans only serves to deplete their value and keep the organization stuck where it is. If it isn’t Taillon first, then it’ll be Frazier. But the order no longer matters. What’s clear is that many of the once young players we had hope for will no longer be part of the organizational future, whether that future is next year or next month.
Being a Pirates’ fan isn’t easy, and I suspect it never will be. Fan favorites will come and go, some of whom will never play in a competitive game wearing black and gold. It’s a fact that we’ve come to loathe, but I think many of us understand that this is how it’s going to be, whether we like it or not. Don’t worry, I won’t wax poetic about the “process” or enjoying “the ride,” as I’ve done in the past – probably to great ridicule – but I will say that maybe there’s going to be a light at the end of the tunnel after all. It’s too early to tell, obviously, but it’s a nice thought in a not-so-nice situation, right?