OK, the winter meetings have come and gone, and in the ten weeks since the season has ended, Pittsburgh has done some jivin' and shuckin' in regards to the 40-man roster. If the season started tomorrow, here's what the PNC Fightin' Forty would be:
RHP: Jimmy Barthmaier, TJ Beam, Matt Capps, Jesse Chavez, Craig Hansen, Jeff Karstens, Evan Meek, Ross Ohlendorf, Romulo Sanchez, Ian Snell, Jeff Sues, Ron Uviedo, and Tyler Yates.
LHP: Sean Burnett, Dave Davidson, Zach Duke, Phil Dumatrait, Tom Gorzelanny, John Grabow, Paul Maholm, and Donnie Veal.
C: Robinzon Diaz, Ryan Doumit, Jason Jaramillo, and Steve Lerud.
INF: Pedro Alvarez, Brian Bixler, Luis Cruz, Adam LaRoche, Andy LaRoche, Freddy Sanchez, Ramon Vazquez, Neil Walker, and Jack Wilson.
OF: Nate McLouth, Nyjer Morgan, Brandon Moss, Steve Pearce, and Jose Tabata.
Since the last game, the suits have cut the bench and some deadwood pitching. The only newcomers, aside from Pedro and the Rule 5 gang that needed cover, are IF Vazquez, who can play all four infield spots, back-up C Jaramillo, and LHP Veal, a Rule 5 project.
Additions? We don't really foresee many more to fill that one spot left in the 40-man roster. They'll continue to try to move Wilson and Grabow, maybe big daddy LaRoche, Sanchez, and Snell, too, sometime between now and the trading deadline.
The team will cross their fingers and hope that an outfielder with a little pop will drop into their price range. It's likely that Andrew McCutcheon will finally get his long-awaited call to the bigs, along with perhaps Daniel McCutchen, sometime during the year.
And there's always the off-chance that Dirt Dog Doug Mientkiewicz will be back, although we wouldn't recommend holding your breath waiting on his return. Ditto for Jason Michaels, Denny Bautista, Raul Chavez and Jason Davis, unless they come back cheap.
And that, folks, will be your 2009 Pirates, a team in the early stages of a full-blown makeover. Again. Let's hope these guys get it right.