Pirates Acquire Sean Rodriguez, DFA Gaby Sanchez

The Pittsburgh Pirates have acquired second baseman Sean Rodriguez from the Tampa Bay Rays in exchange for a player to be named later or cash considerations. To make room on the 40 man roster, the Pirates have designated Gaby Sanchez for assignment.

Rodriguez is coming off a year where he posted a .701 OPS. That is in line with his previous numbers, although his average and OBP both dropped from where they were in 2013, while his power went to a career high, maintaining the OPS. He can play every position, with the exception of catcher, which makes him the prime candidate to replace Josh Harrison as the super utility player.

As for Sanchez, it’s hard to tell what the Pirates will do from here at first base. Neal Huntington has said constantly that Pedro Alvarez is currently their first base option. The question now is whether Alvarez will be an everyday first baseman, or a guy in a platoon. If he’s platooning, then I think Sanchez is the best option to pair with him. The Pirates designating Sanchez doesn’t prevent this from happening. They could non-tender him tomorrow, then try to sign him to a cheaper deal as a free agent.

I don’t think Rodriguez would be an option at first base for the platoon role, even though he does hit lefties better than right-handers. For one, his value is ultimately a super utility player. He also doesn’t hit lefties as well as Sanchez, with a career .746 OPS.

The Pirates have acquired a lot of utility players this off-season, going with an approach where they seem to be throwing a ton of options at the wall and seeing which ones stick. Rodriguez is clearly the best of them, and basically has guaranteed the spot. That will make a lot of the other players expendable off the 40-man roster throughout the off-season as the Pirates add other players through trades and free agency. The guys that I think will be the safest will be guys like Pedro Florimon and Justin Sellers, who can provide strong defense at shortstop. Sean Rodriguez can play shortstop, but the Pirates tend to prefer a strong defender at short, separate from their super utility player.

Rodriguez is projected to make $2 M in arbitration, and this is his final year before free agency. Sanchez was projected to make $2.7 M. So the 2015 payroll sees a small drop with this move. As for the PTBNL, due to the timing of this move, I wouldn’t be surprised if it is someone who is eligible for the Rule 5 draft. The Pirates have done this in previous years, and it’s a common practice for many teams in these types of deals. You wouldn’t want to announce the player until it is known that he will go undrafted. This is just pure speculation.

  • I don’t understand the obsession with Gaby. I was barely a contributor last year. He now is a year older and projected to make 2.7 million in arb. Let the guy walk!!!!

  • Gaby gone? How will the Pirates compete?

  • Awesome move. Gabby and Ike weren’t worth the ~7 mil they were due. They replaced them for 2 mil freeing up 5 mil for a run at a Liriano type.

  • Little article on cheap, available RH power bats from FanGraphs:

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/instagraphs/all-the-affordable-right-handed-power-by-the-projections/

    Great example of why using projections for random AAA bats to replace Gaby Sanchez is silly can be found towards the bottom. That’s our Brad Eldred, projected to hit 8% better than league average.

  • Its a shame all of us Pirate fans can do is debate the merits of dfa’d players. we are like battered housewives, conditioned to believe and make excuses for our batterer , Pirate mgt. Let the attack on me begin.

    • it’s not “all we can do.”

      it’s just what we’re doing right now, today.

      You can probably find a message board for every team talking about the AAA depth players and utility bench pieces that they acquire and DFA too. Not just Pirate fans.

      You can be a fan that enjoys these little debates about little players, or you can be a fan that only likes the big moves. Neither is right or wrong.

      UTIL was a very important hole for the pirates to fill since Harrison became the everyday 3b. If discussing that acquisition is wrong, then whoops!

      • LETS GO BUCS ! !
        I do sometimes remind myself.. Gaby or Rodriguez or someone else… It’s the name on the front of the jersey we all root for, not the back

    • LMAO ! Beautiful. .. Allen , just warning you, be careful with the use of metaphors and therefore anything more complex.. Humor is rarely appreciated w this bunch as well. Tread lightly… They may have you walking the plank !

      • Part of your issue might be that rather condescending tone you are taking toward anyone who disagrees with you. This post made me think you are saying some posters are bright enough to get humor or complex metaphors.

        • Yep. The next comment down I said every now and then I stop and remind myself Gaby or Sean Rodriguez or somebody else, doesn’t matter …We all root for the name on the front of the jersey, not the back…. But if ya read the entire thread , I am only gonna take a personal attack.. getting cornered by bullies , before I back them off with an intellectual muscle flex. Sorry for hurt feeling.

        • I will never state another obvious point or even another word about Gaby Sanchez if he re-signs…. Any unreasonable turn any discussion I have ever had , has been involving Gaby Sanchez. He has a very intensely loyal fan club of supporters.

  • Tim , I see your point about the utility/inf bench spot… The safe bet being one of the defense 1st guys.. I really like Florimon for that plus D at short.

    -My question , why swap out Gaby for a guy w nearly the same arb price tag , with the strong possibility there isn’t a spot for him?

    • don’t think of this as a Rodriguez for Sanchez trade.

      They already knew Sanchez would be DFA’d this offseason. The righty platoon spot will be addressed later.

      Rodriguez will be on the team in the 2014 Opening Day Josh Harrison role.

      • That wasn’t what I was implying. Gaby was swapped out of the 40 man to make room for Rodriguez . That is a reality. From what Tim suggested it seems a real possibility that Florimon/Sellers/Elmore,etc. could squeeze Rodriguez out.. I am just not sure what happens with that $2+mill he will be owed , or then why acquiring him is even worth the risk….

        • “Rodriguez is clearly the best of them, and basically has guaranteed the spot. That will make a lot of the other players expendable off the 40-man roster throughout the off-season as the Pirates add other players through trades and free agency.” -Tim Williams, literally in the article we’re commenting on

          • Thanks for your input. My.My question for “Tim” is his impression from the front officePOV is why?I don’t get the feeling Tim is completely sold on the value….
            -I ‘ll hang up and listen…. I’ll actually hold for Tim.

            • Rodriguez will be the utility infielder, and will push the other guys out. The guys who I think are safe are the guys who can also play middle infield. The Pirates tend to have two infield bench players: a utility guy and a guy with strong defense up the middle. Rodriguez fills the utility role, leaving the other guys competing for the middle infield spot.

    • I guess the acquisition itself insists he make the team? But why? Is the Utility that valuable?. We survived w/o it last year until that awkward and ugly attempt at forcing Micheal Martinez to fill that desire. How do you feel about it ?

      • I think Michael Martinez is an outstanding example of why Rodriguez makes sense. And we had a utility guy before Martinez; his name was Harrison.

      • They survived without it? Josh Harrison saved the season by filling in for injured guys.

        • Last season? 2014?

        • That was the plan right? Til J-Hay had to go screw it up nearly winning a batting title …. Going from corner outfielder to present and future 3rdbaseman.

        • Easy there, jaygray.

          Josh Harrison saved the season by going bonkers at the plate completely out of nowhere. The Josh Harrison Utility Guy that Rodriguez projects to be barely made the team.

  • I love that they got Rodriguez. He is good against lefties and can play solid defense just about anywhere. He’s not great but better than what they had. I had hoped they would sig him and figured they’d be enticed by his power. Agreed the HR power won’t translate well to PNC but he hits the ball hard when he makes contact.

  • Since Gaby was DFA’d, could the Pirates look to acquire Mark Trumbo from Diamondbacks? Heard he may be traded following the signing of Yasmany Tomas. He is right handed with power and would be a good Platoon partner with Pedro.

    • The price to acquire him would likely dwarf the amount of use they would get out of him.

      I’d enjoy a Trumbo – Alvarez platoon. It just might not be realistic.

      • I think if they could get him for major league depth talent (Tabata/Cumpton) and a B-C level prospect and/or a Rule 5 eligible prospect, then it would be worth it. In addition to being a good platoon partner with Alvarez, if Harrison struggles you could in theory move Alvarez back to third and have Trumbo play 1st base full time.

      • You can humor me and read my comments on payroll under that article… I have a reasonable working grasp of how it works, for a novice… I see more “Value” in Florimon on a minor league deal . A bench player may be best served being certain not being a liability , or even give something extra defensively and the 8th slot production at the plate becomes a wash… Do you really believe Rodriguez presents enough of an offensive presence to over shadow his mediocre or even satisfactory defense?. His best asset maybe his versatility

  • Gaby has had his chance. Time to see what else is out there. The Pirates are going to make a big splash. It’s just a matter of time!!!

  • Sooooo, not looking too far ahead (but I will anyways!)…. I can assume that this is the last full year of Pedro in a Pirates uniform. Does a great year from him mean he gets traded at this year’s deadline to improve his return? Or does it what until next year? Are all replacement hopes pinned on Josh Bell (with a slight chance of Allie)?

    I’m just curious if the Pirates NEXT move might just answer all of these questions that I have! Perhaps the Pirates will surprise everybody with some out-of-the-blue 1B FA signing for multiple years.

    • If Alvarez returns to even 2012-2013 form, I think the best move may be to hang on to him in 2016, his last year of arb. Allow me to explain in bullet point form:

      -as the FA market this year has already shown, you’re not signing a competent 1B for less than Alvarez will make in arbitration.
      -assuming a qualifying offer is extended and rejected, the compensation draft pick could be seen by the club as greater value than what they may get for a year of Alvarez.
      -I see very, very little chance the club goes into 2016, or any season, with it’s hopes at a position pinned on a rookie, a la 2014 Andrew Lambo.

      • I would agree mostly with what you said. I’d be curious, though, if Josh Bell (or even Allie) blossoms to the point this July, that Alvarez becomes expendable. Obviously, the return on Alvarez is (potentially) much bigger if you trade him with a year-and-a-half to go, as opposed to a year after this season, a half-year at the 2016 deadline, or just the draft pick when you let him walk after 2016.

        The ideal world scenario is that an internal candidate steps up to take over 1B and makes a trade of Alvarez more viable.

        • Of course, you’ve also got the issue that Neil Walker will probably cost $8 million next year…but that’s another story altogether….

        • Fair to wonder, and I hinted at this the slightest bit above.

          It would be out of character for the club to deal a key player mid-season while the team is in contention, regardless of max value. If they hold to that theme, then I do think a comp pick could be as much or more value in terms of prospects that they could get for him straight up.

          However, I could see a scenario where, if they wanted to, could prefer to follow this mini MLB player for MLB player trend started at last year’s deadline. Potentially lesser overall value, but not necessarilly making the present team any worse.

        • If Pedro doesn’t get appreciably better, I don’t see a QO in his future.

      • I agree with your first bullet.
        If Pedro proves by performance to be worth a QO that will be great. But based on his career to date he isn’t QO worthy. Maybe in two years he will be worthy, and at peak value if the Pirates continue to play him. Besides, the Pirates won’t have an internal alternative for two years anyway.
        I think they’ll go with Bell at 1B in 2017. Pedro will leave in free agency for a team that will promise to try him at 3B.

  • All this move says to me is that Gaby’s deal is done, in the $2.2-$2.5 million range. They simply DFA’ed him temporarily, already have an agreement in place. As you can tell, I think Gaby is definitely coming back to platoon/mentor/coach Pedro. They had too many other, more obvious DFA options for it to be anything else.

  • Since the Pirates don’t discuss their upcoming moves with the media or the fans, I have no idea who the starting 1st basemen in 2015 will be or who fills out the pitching dept. At this point Pedro is the starter and if they can’t get enough for him on the trade market he will be on the 25 man roster, that does not mean he will be the starting 1st baseman in 2015. Pedro is not the kind of player the Pirates can cut, he is a player that can give them 20-30 home runs and they can’t go out and get that many home runs for 1st base on the open market. IMO, they probably have already tried to trade him and have not found any takers yet, that does not mean they won’t trade him as other teams make moves over the winter. For sure it is still very early in the year for moves to be made and the longer the Pirates wait on some of these players the more the price drops on many of them.

  • Cough Wily Mo Pena Cough

    • Gag, Wily Mo Pena, GAG! LOL, I kid…..

      Bucs don’t want Pedro looking over his shoulder every time he has an O-fer. He IS the 1B until he isn’t. NH sees Alvarez putting up back to back monster seasons with FA in view. Sea-Rod gives them a righty bat off the bench to go with Polanco/Snider. Florimon will probably be on the roster as a D-first SS. Lambo will be a day away in Indy if Pete gets injured. Only question is if Rodriquez or Snider keeps the 1B mitt in their locker.

  • I can be reasonable. After NH is convinced no better alternative exists to spell Pedro , whether that is due to injury, ineptitude or a platoon , he brings back Gaby not at a $2.7m hit , but what he is really worth , then I live with Gaby. I just don’t think he always has to be brought in the moment a lefty appears in the game.I think it actually began irking me 2 yrs ago , a lefty would come on in the 4th, Gaby hits for G.Jones and from the fifth on , we watch him flail against right handers. Maybe my real gripe was with Clint Hurdle.

  • Lambo just moved up the food chain.

  • Well, Andrew McCutchen wanted a full-time first-baseman, so the Pirates are going to give him a full-time first baseman!!! And to make sure of it, they decided to cut ties with all of their other first basemen, so there wouldn’t be any doubt. If you’ve only got one 1B on the roster, he has to be the full-time guy, right?? The power of Cutch comes through again!!

    • Yeah and boy do we have depth in case Pedro gets hurt or simply sucks.

      • I don’t think the Pirates are close to being done with their off-season moves (and Gaby may certainly be coming back, who knows?), but it’s a bit scary at the moment on the Pirates “official” 40-man roster on their website. Since they list Josh Harrison as an OF, their list of infielders on the 40-man: Pedro Alvarez, Jake Elmore, Pedro Florimon, Alen Hanson, Jordy Mercer, Sean Rodriguez, Justin Sellers, and Neil Walker!!

        • Oh, I agree that they aren’t done. We need pitching and something needs done with the over-abundance of middle infield depth players and the lack of useable bench pieces. But it’s a little scary right now for sure.

          • Lack of usable bench pieces? Care to explain?

            I see two position player spots left on this roster, with Stewart, one of Snider/Polanco, and Rodriguez already having bench roles locked up.

        • Can’t speak for the bloke in charge of updating the Pirates website, but any one w half a brain knows Harrison is the new Pirates every day 3B!

        • I get your point… The 40 man roster is a phantom right now…. scaffolding ….. Not even relevant til they are done.

      • It’s Dec 1st. The first real game isn’t for more than 120 days. Whether you believe it or not, I guarantee you NH as a Plan A, B,C and D, maybe more, for addressing the holes on the roster. Let the off-season play out before you jump to conclusions.

        • Oh, I don’t think anybody is panicking or thinking the Pirates aren’t done yet, but certainly I, and I’m sure others, can be entertained at this moment in time by the fact that the Pirates currently don’t have much on the infield “roster” at that moment.

          It’s also a sign that no matter how much quality the Pirates have in their minor leagues, it’s a bit telling that they don’t have a single player knocking on the door at 1B, 2B, SS, 3B, or C (or really at any of the OF positions, either.) Not one single position player in the Pirates minor league system has a full-time starter on the major league team shaking in his boots, fearing to lose his starting job. Not one. I think it’s a sign of even the best organizations will only have 1 or 2 guys knocking on the door at any given year (also is a direct result of the Pirates pitching-centric drafts of the NH era.)

          • It’s also a sign of where the organization is in terms of overall development. Six of eight position players slated to start next year will be truly homegrown players, all under the age of 30.

            And while they may not literally be beating down the door in spring training, there will be a catcher and a 1B/OF that could easily compete for jobs by the end of the year.

            • Agreed. Again, I’m not complaining, I think it’s just a good reminder, that even with the Pirates having one of the best minor league organizations in all of baseball, there aren’t guys lining up every spring to take the jobs away from the current players. It’s just how slow moving baseball development goes and how much of it is so hit or miss.

              What’s funny about your comment about 6 out of the 8 position players being homegrown is that the Pirates will have a:
              a CF playing LF
              a CF playing RF
              a 3B playing 1B
              a C playing 2B
              and a 2B playing 3B!

              Plus, an MVP CF who is more suited to LF and a SS many didn’t think would make it as a starter.

              You just never know where guys are going to come from!

          • An organization that develops 2 MLB talents (average or better) from each and every draft and international signing year is doing an excellent job.

          • Scott Kliesen
            December 1, 2014 3:19 pm

            What’s your definition of knocking on the door? Because Bell, Hanson and Diaz are all slated to start in AAA. To me that is knocking on the door. Mercer is a young SS, so he should be there for a few years, maybe even until Cole arrives in 2018 or 19. Now 3B is s legit concern.

            • My definition of knocking on the door is that they are ready this spring training to take over (or fully compete) for the starting position (though I fully understand and endorse the “have to wait to come up until mid-season to work on a few things **cough cough** not start the clock for arb/Super 2” thing).

              Much like Polanco, Marte and Cole the last couple of years.

              Bell and Hanson will probably be that way for next spring training.

              Again, I’m not complaining, it’s simply the reality check of how slow moving that even the greatest organizations are at replacing talent.

              Not a single Pirates starting position player (and actually, the rotation, too!) is currently threatened to lose their starting job this spring from an internal candidate. And that’s for a team that lost its starting C, that doesn’t currently have an actual 1B and is relying on a 27-year-old breakout to be the starting 3B, after having played only 70-some major league games there prior to last year.

          • Agree all the way. I will say thay must be considering Alan Hansen at second for 2016. That would be more a financial decision. I agree about the RH power arms.. I think its a sound stratagy. If enough of them pan out,they give a great pool of trading chips to work off

      • Why not give Lambo a bench spot behind Pedro?

  • Like the addition but why DFA Gabby unless you have something else to replace him with?

    • Tim’s write-up, which is really, really good IMO, hit on this…

      All this essentially says is that the Pirates were never planning to take Sanchez to arbitration. They can still resign him, or go with one of about half a dozen completely unproven AAAA players in his place.

      • I know Tim is a smart guy… Know who else is? Neil Huntington . Gee, maybe Neal has thought this thru… Maybe Neal has a workable plan… He’s had one or two

      • Bringing Sanchez is a little more palatable now that a) you have a Rodriguez to provide some positional flexibility and b) he comes (hopefully) with a smaller price tag.

    • I think there is a chance they have considered this… I am gonna go out on a limb… The Pirate offseason is not concluded.

  • How many games the Pirates will face a LH starter? Maybe 20-30. I don´t think that is worth having a full time player to platoon at 1b with Alvarez.

    I would roll the dice with Sean Rodriguez taking those starts at 1b against LH and bringing a real power bat to the bench like Jonny Gomes or swing a trade for Danny Valencia, so he can take 2b against lefties and you can switch Harrison to RF to give Polanco a break.

    Maybe the Pirates will go with another left hand bat that can play 1b like Mike Carp.
    Unless Gaby takes a big pay cut to at least 2M, I think that money should be put into pitching.

    • SRod (yeah, I went there!) has some pop, at least last year… .232 ISO. Based on his career, looks like he spent 2014 turning into the anti-Ike Davis.

    • Pirates faced 33 LH starters last year 31 in 2013, overall about 20% of their PAs came against LHP. So 30 games versus LH starter assuming 3 PA/game versus starter is 90 PAs, or assuming 700 PAs/position in a season, 20% of the is 140.

      Going from Alvarez .196/.267/.321 vs LHP to a right handed hitter who could hit left handed pitching at least league average, over 90 to 140 PAs is projected to be worth 4 to 6 runs, that is fairly valuable.

      • But is Pedro ever gonna be what we all hope for him if we don’t give him the opportunity to exercise his LH demons?

        • This is only one of the completely idiotic things you’ve posted on this article. Just stop.

          • I was being facetious… Do you know what that means?

            • I don’t think you do…

              • Getting confused?… I see you defending this argument on a few different fronts, Jared. You can handle it.

                • You are starting to turn me I think…

                • You clearly weren’t being sardonic or facetious…you made a completely idiotic comment (not the first of the last hour for you in fact) and cannot even address the content of it with any response of substance. The fact that multiple very knowledgeable posters have responded negatively to your idiocy here means you probably should give it up.

                  • Pedro deserves the at bats more than the guys who have been getting them at 1st.. Bottom line… Maybe it is the best of a bad situation …. Should we pay Gaby to have a bad option from either side?

                  • I actually find myself arguing w the same few characters… My bad…. I know you can’t reason with crazy.

        • Exercise? Don’t you mean exorcise ?

  • If nothing else, Pedro must recognize this is his put up or shut up year. We used to talk about the Bucs “giving scholarships” for various positions, which they haven’t done in awhile. But seems Neal is doing it here as all competition has been neutralized.

    • On a team that should be adding pieces to try to compete for an NL Central title…we’re gifting Pedro 1B and eliminating all competition/depth.

      • No, they’re trimming the fat off the roster. Ike and Gaby had to go.

        • I am a little concerned about moving forward with Pedro at 1B. There also isn’t a ton available to help add to improve the depth at 1B.

          • It’s only December 1. I’m sure this isn’t the roster they are going into Spring Training with. Give Huntington some time.

          • I can get why you’re concerned, but what else is there to do?

            Not many teams in MLB can look at a guy on their roster and say “I know he shared the HR title a couple seasons ago, but I’m just not sold on him. Better go get the next coming of Willie McCovey and stash him on the bench or in AAA. That should be easy.”

            Nobody does that. The Orioles didn’t do it with Chris Davis, and I’m pretty sure they knew or shoulda known about his issues. When he fell flat, they muddled through the best they could with whatever they could trot out there.

            • Like Pedro, Davis earned his starting job last year based on 2013 performance. Unlke Pedro, it not clear yet if Davis has a starting job with the O’s for 2015. He’s rumored to be available. At the very least, O’s haven’t come out and said, “He’s our guy in 2015,” like Neal has with Pedro.

              My point is that Neal (and Clint) have stressed having to earn positions over the past couple of years. So Pedro’s “scholarship” at 1b is a departure from that. I’m not completely against it as I think Pedro can get much better. I’m simply noting it’s not “business as usual”. And fwiw, they do still have Lambo if Pedro falls on his face.

              • lonleylibertarian
                December 1, 2014 5:30 pm

                I am sorry – where have they stressed “earning” positions?
                Cumpton was the 3rd or 4th best starter coming out of spring training last year and got sent to Indy
                Two years ago J-Hay out hit the awful Brandon Inge and was sent to Indy.

                Lambo gets a brief audition that is called a trial for a starting role at 1st base last year in spring
                training and we have tons of posters claiming he lost his opportunity to play for the Bucs forever
                after 60 or so at bats – then we get to watch Ike Davis go out and start at 1st base and bat clean up for over 200 ABs with a BA that was at or below the Mendoza line the entire time.

                If you follow this team they seem to value experience [otherwise what the hell was Barmes doing on the
                roster for the last three years] over potential and talent.

                I really get annoyed when people try and give Hurdle or Harrison credit for the emergence of J-Hay. That is the worst kind of deception and hypocrysy – they did not even want him on the ML roster. He proved them wrong and I am happy for him – but neither of them deserves an ounce of credit for his success – he got his opportunity because they had NO OTHER ALTERNATIVE – anyone who says otherwise is living in a fantasy world.

  • I love this combo of transactions. The Gaby era ends in exchange for a young versatile MLB vet … That can play inf/of. Saving almost $1.5m in the process for a guy who , at least when he struggles at the plate, it won’t be eating up ab’s at 1st base. Best wishes Gaby & apologists.

    • Might want to solicit the help of a calculator. Numbers are hard.

      • Um…I will show my work… $2.7m projected for Gaby in arb. 1.4 for Rodriguez … 1.3… It’s baseball dollars… the 200g’s is like the 30 cents in my pocket’

        • “Rodriguez is projected to make $2 M in arbitration, and this is his final year before free agency. Sanchez was projected to make $2.7 M.”

          • So worst case.. We get 700k to get a legit utility guy and an albatross off our neck… Deal.

            • I can see you’re clearly in the Gaby-Sanchez-stinks-because-I-said-so crowd. I’m not going to get anything out of this conversation. Have a good day.

              • He stinks… Tell me how he stacks up against 30 MLB 1stbaseman.

                • If you actually cared to have a reasonable discussion you could simply start by reading the article Tim wrote just last week.

                  But you don’t. You don’t care to do anything but tell us how he stinks, and that’s that.

                  Like I said, I’m not getting anything out of this conversation. Have a nice day.

                  • I did read it … Thanks for the suggestion. Again Goodbye Gaby and Goodbye Gaby’s apologies….
                    Let’s move on with the 40 man roster.

              • And now he is gone.. Mayhap I was on to something.

      • LOL.
        Honestly.. You guys are all reasonably with it…Every time this Gaby character comes up , its like I fell into some bizarre alternate universe … Why? Why perpetuate this farce this guy is a MLB 1st baseman ?

    • He turns 30 in April. Not exactly “young” by MLB standards.

      • I guess as long as his name isn’t Gaby , I lose objectivity

      • And Rodriguez is projected for $2.0 million in arbitration, Sanchez was $2.7 million.

        • Even by that projection…. It’d be worth paying to free up 200 ab’s at 1st base for someone who doesn’t hit like a back up shortstop

          • LOL

            But what kind of vehicle would he be if he were a car?

          • All shortstops hit .251/.306/.363 for 87 wRC+ last season.

            If you don’t Sanchez that’s fine, but if Alvarez’s is playing first it would behoove the Pirates to find someone for 100-140 PAs vs LHP.

            • But if Pedro has his classic Dave Kingman year and hits 30hr’s and 100 rbi… It will be satisfactory
              I know it is taboo to sight home runs.. But they’re fun.. and a few of Pedro’s even won games….
              I like the long ball

              • How many 30-homer players were on the two World Series teams? Could you tell me? Pedro hits homers and nothing else. Nothing. Tell me how valuable he is again…

                • How much does he cost ? vs Gaby for an example?

                  • Pedro?! Pedro costs a crap-ton more than Gaby, but that also is irrelevant and has NOTHING to do with the problem of going with Pedro full-time at 1B and not having any depth behind him.

                • What does that have to do with anything?

                  • Simply trying to give an example of how HRs aren’t the end all be all…certainly not in the case of Pedro where he contributes very little beyond the long ball.

                    • But the longball is still necessary. Having a power threat in the lineup changes how other teams manage against you. I know everyone is in love with OBP guys, but OBP doesn’t hit the 3 run HR in the 8th to give you the lead, now does it?

                    • Power numbers are way down across baseball, offense as a whole is. I appreciate your stance, but the problem is that Pedro kills many many more rallies than he does hit the 3-run HR to win the game. Grounds into a lot of DPs, Ks way too much, and never gets on base. (Clearly do not mean “never”).

                    • Do you really think that teams worry about how to manage against a power hitter who has to bat 8th because all he does is hit an occasional HR and is impotent against LH pitchers and not much better against RH ?

                    • Yes. Why do you think there are LH specialist relievers? ANd Pedro does not, and will not bat 8th.

                • Comparing all the Pirates who were significant offensive contributors by ( Runs + RBI ) / Plate Appearances:

                  Cutch: .272
                  Polanco: .270
                  Walker: .269
                  Marte: .244
                  JHAY: .238
                  Martin: .237
                  Pedro: .230
                  G. Sanchez .224
                  Davis: .216
                  Snider: .211
                  Mercer: .205

                  From this we see that Pedro was the 7th best run producer on the Pirates, in spite of his awful year. Based on last years statistics he is appropriately placed in the 7th position. But he could rebound in 2015 and do much better.

                  Based on the above, and other considerations the following lineup looks good:

                  1: Polanco
                  2: JHAY
                  3: Cutch
                  4: Walker
                  5: Marte
                  6: Cervelli
                  7: Pedro
                  8: Mercer

                  • From that we see what a meaningless stat that is, with Polanco being the second highest on the team, when he spent the last month of the season carrying Tabata’s jock.

              • Dave Kingman hit right handed.

          • You mean like Pedro? Who hits even worse against lefties? Are you serious?

  • Decent move. Still worried about Pedro being an every day first baseman with his struggles against lefties.

    Now we can go get Dillon Gee from the NY Mets and resign Liriano.

  • I would’ve rather had Kelly Johnson as the UTIL, but i’ve always been a Rodriguez fan. I can live with this.

    Still bet Gaby comes back to mash lefties at a reduced cost in 2015.

    • Johnson doesn’t play SS though, so he wouldn’t be a good fit.

      • I guess my thinking was that Jay Hay didn’t really either. Yeah i guess it would’ve depended on if they brought in a SS specialist like Barmes to match last year’s bench makeup.

        Doesn’t matter anymore though. Rodriguez is here, so Johnson doesn’t matter. I like Rodriguez.

  • He’s got a .247 lifetime split against lefties and a reverse power split…. I don’t see a great RH 1B option here, although a reserve infielder for not much cost? Sure!

  • Seems like just yesterday people were up in arms about Florimon being our only bench move this off-season. Once again, the Pirates aren’t stupid. Patience is a cool thing.

    Rodriguez is the definition of a utility player. He played at least once at every position last year except CF and C. Much better vs LHP (.746 career OPS) than vs RHP (.611 OPS).

    I’m sure he’ll get most of his time at 2B vs LHP to give Walker some rest (maybe getting more rest = less injuries?). No I’m not saying a ‘platoon’ so calm down.

    Pretty much average defense at SS and 3B, 0 errors at OF and 1B. Overall, he seems like the exact player many of us fans wanted to be the ‘new Harrison.’ Well done Pirates.

    • Great depth move. Use the money the team committed to Liriano and Martin to grab a good three starter and a rehab project; pick up some pieces to compete for the pen and lets play ball already

    • There was nothing BUT bench depth moves, and another back up catcher added, who will magically become a starter. And, this move removes the horrible temptation that was Gaby Steroid. Christmas came early this year.

  • Great move, probably means Barmes won’t be brought back, shows they do have a plan for 1st base even though we don’t know what it is yet, provides needed quality depth.

  • Although the Ike Davis trade has made me wary of any PTBNL in a deal, setting that aside for now this is a great move. Rodriguez is very versatile – much like Harrison – and can hit some. A very underrated utility player for TB the past 3-5 years. Combine that with DFA of Sanchez, and that makes this an even better move.

    Hopefully, having Rodriguez will prevent guys like Sellers and Florimon from needing to be on the team in the Spring – since he can play SS as well as 2B and LF. He is not a Gold Glover, but is competent.

  • LOVE the move. Sean provides the RH 1B option but also brings versatility to be play all IF spots and even OF. Good move, helps with the issue of using 3 roster spots last year for 1B.

  • Even though I thought this could happen I still surprised they DFA’d Gabby. I thought he would be a security blanket for Pedro. I wonder if this opens up a spot for Tony Sanchez.

    • Tony’s spot will be in Indianapolis as the #3 catcher (though a lot of playing time will go to Diaz). The fantasy that Tony somehow was gonna be a 1B or utility player was just that — a fantasy.

      • I agree Tony Sanchez is as close to playing 1st base in the majors as i am and I am in my 70’s.

      • Then why keep him?

        • Um about 5 reasons (just off the top of my head).

          1) NO reason to cut or trade him, Pirates control him at low cost.
          2) He’s the #3 catcher, and it is proven you need 3 (or more) catchers to get through a season.
          3) He is still working on his catching defense, maybe, just maybe he will get better.
          4) At the very least, Tony COULD be the backup C for a few years
          5) See reason #1. Again. And Again. And Again. Just not sure why people are so quick to ‘get rid of players’ when there is no need to.

  • Added defensive versatility from the bench. And also a little pop with the bat. Not a bad move

    • I don’t think the pop will happen at PNC, I think the main talent he will bring to Pittsburgh is versatility. I think the bat will be somewhere along the lines of a poor mans Gabby Sanchez.

      • Higher K rate. But then again, you used to be able to count on Gaby working the count until sometime last June when he seemed to start chasing a lot of crap.

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