Jon Paul Morosi of Fox Sports wrote today: "While the Pirates weren’t close to dealing for a shortstop early Wednesday afternoon, they have a chance to do so before Thursday’s deadline to tender contracts.
Sources say the Pirates have interest in Tampa Bay’s Jason Bartlett and Minnesota’s J.J. Hardy. Both are available via trade, because the San Francisco Giants (Miguel Tejada) and St. Louis Cardinals (Ryan Theriot) shopped elsewhere for their infield upgrades.
With the addition of a good shortstop, Pittsburgh fans could look at a credible everyday lineup in 2011. Now, if only they had some pitching..."
Geez, sounds like a Pittsburgh blogger.
They do have a couple of shekels to spend (sources we've seen say that they can add $15-20M to the current payroll) and made a competitive bid for Jorge De La Rosa, according to a Dejan Kovacevic tweet.
Gotta spend it on something, right? Bartlett and Hardy will cost about $5-6M this season. The FO would likely try to tie them up for a couple of seasons since both are free agents in 2012.
A shortstop, a pitcher and a RH 1B/OF is the 2010 shopping list; the brass have enough to cover the contracts, it appears. And if they don't get who they want, they could start trying to ink their core guys long term. McCutch would be a great start.