Word on the street is that the Pirates are being told by the Commissioner’s office that a $48m payroll won’t cut the mustard with them. $60m – $65m is closer to their target.
If true, this would mean the Pirates would have over $25m to spend.
That doesn’t mean Littlefield would be able to sign anyone – or that any of the players would even want to play in Pittsburgh. That just means the organization is starting to feel a bit more pressure than they have in the past, whatever good that will do.
The Pirates could also decide to spend the money in other areas.
It is known that the Pirates are expanding the use of their BATS video scouting system by employing video scouts to start charting pitches. Bucco Blog stated over and over during the 2006 year that we were losing games because of poor advance scouting so this can’t hurt a bit. There are pros and cons using the BATS system but some information is better than no information, they say. Advance scouts are much, much better, but they also cost a lot more to deploy than a few video jockey’s. You get what you pay for.. ask the Cardinals.
The Pirates have also decided to sign an international player in Herrera which will hold their costs down as well.
And we know Littlefield is adding a few more dollars to the fat on top with his new front office hires and bringing back some better development guys in the farm, starting with Beasley. I hope he adds even more developmental help.
It will be hard for the Pirates to spend $65m behind the scenes so I suppose we can start looking for Littlefield to add a couple of decent free agent bats, since there is a glut of them all looking for fat contracts.
And one starter, of course.
We’ll have to see where this goes.