Forget the 19 straight losing seasons. Forget the fact that their management uses coupons when shopping for their players. Don’t even mention the fact that they have maybe one or two MLB calibre players on their roster.
I was willing to look past all of that. But today was the day that I lost all respect for the Pittsburgh Pirates and stopped viewing them as a Major League team.
And yes you guessed why. They actually WILLING took A.J. Burnett in a trade from the Yankees. Maybe Brian Cashman has compromising photos of Pirates GM Neal Huntington. Maybe he had a couple of wise guys show up to his door and make him ‘an offer he couldn’t refuse.’
I can’t see any other reasonable explanation as to why Huntington would pursue Burnett in a deal and give up 13 million to get him. The Pirates NEVER spend money, yet they open the vault for this guy? The same guy who posted back-to-back plus 5.00 ERA seasons?
Obviously the thinking is A.J. will give Pirates innings while turning his career around in the weak NL Central. But let’s not kid ourselves. A.J. would struggle at the AA level right now and he’s now moving to a team that isn’t going to score him nearly as many runs as the Yankees and Jays did. If he reaches 10 wins, it’ll be a miracle.
This move frustrates me in that A. it gets A.J. out of the division (the Jays loved teeing off on him) and B. it gives the Yankees the money to sign Eric Chavez and Raul Ibanez. Not like those guys are going to intimidate anyone, but I just hate it when the Yankees get what they want.
At the very least I take some joy knowing that A.J. is now stuck on a horrible team for the next two years or so. He quit on the Jays and his career has never been the same since. His first start as a Bomber against the Jays will forever be a great Blue Jays memory. Watching Doc outpitch and outclass him and then having the fans voice their opinion of him as he walked off the field in defeat was priceless.
Karma can be a cruel mistress.