Bucs carrying lengthy offseason list

Under general manager Neal Huntington, the Pirates have never been big players in the free agent market. The club is not going to make a splash in the top tier of free agents this winter, but the Pirates do have an extensive list of needs that are going to need to be addressed.

At the top of the Pirates’ offseason list is signing a starting catcher, starting first baseman and starting shortstop. The team has internal candidates for each of these three positions, but none of those internal options are especially appealing. There is also a need to add some starting pitching depth. Huntington said that he is willing to fill any of these holes via trades, but the Pirates are still wary of sacrificing too many prospects in order to build their big league club.

The club recently declined club options on Ronny Cedeno, Paul Maholm, Chris Snyder and Ryan Doumit. The Pirates are leaving the door open to any of the four re-signing, though all four are going to first explore what the market has to offer them elsewhere. The club is also interested in bringing back free agent first baseman Derrek Lee, though Lee, too, is going to see what other offers might emerge before engaging in any serious discussions with Pittsburgh.

Jenifer Langosch

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