Today was easily the best day of the 2010 season for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Was it because they took a game from the Florida Marlins in front of 13,000+ at PNC Park? No, not really, but it didn't hurt. The real talk of the town was before the game. All was calm and quiet as people were getting ready to watch the game. Then it happened. My gawd, is that Huntington's music.
Neil basically went all Stone Cold Steve Austin on the MLB draft board and started it off right by signing Stetson Allie for what was learned to be about $2.25 million. In case you forgot, Allie was ranked #8 OVERALL in the 2010 draft. Sure the Pirates went over slot, but he was a second rouund guy with first round stuff. Dude touches 101 on the gun. Give me a break. What a player. Here is some vid of him:
Well the Pirates are on the field and the Calvary did what they do and come up with a win over the Marlins. GFJ busted out and had three RBI, Alvarez had three RBI to go along with two hits and Cutch went deep. You know who else looks real good? James McDonald. We got McDonald for Dotel. McDonald strikes out about a guy and inning and has pitched three really good games for the Pirates and Dotel blew a save tonight.
Towards the end of the game things got more interesting. With Smizik in the middle of the ring droning around about how the Pirates don't want to spend the money he is interrupted.
Jameson Taillon, bitch. Stunner.
Taillon is very, very polished for a high school pitcher. They signed him for around $5 or $5.5 million. He was talking of maybe going for $7 million.
Here is some video on Taillon:
This is the best day for the Pirates of the 2010 year. This is possibly a franchise changing day for the Pirates. If the Pirates can sign Heredia from the Mexican league then the Pirates win everything. Heredia is 16 and he is 6'4 220 pounds and can get into the low 90's with three pitches. Are you frickin kidding me? At 16?
If you are a Pirates fan then you should be downright gitty about what happened today. Tuning into Rocco on Extra Innings after the game and you could hear the excitement in his voice. This is a really big deal for the Pirates and a huge vote of confidence to those people who don't think Neil Hunnington knows what he is doing.
The Pirates never spent money in the draft, never made good trades and never earned any resepct from the fans. The front office now is spending that money. They will most likely spend the most money in the ML draft for the third straight year (Depending on what Harper gets from the Nats). They built the complex in the Dominican and now they are front runners for some of the top talent there. They are moving in the right direction. They are doing what the small market clubs need to do, spend money in the draft, get into the international scene and make good trades.
The Pirates are spending the money in the draft. We will see if they are going to in the international market with Heredia, but from all indications they are being big players. They haven't got hosed in a trade. Neil has done a nice job. I mean just look at this trade deadline. We got James McDonald for Dotel, I talked about that before. We got Chris Snider, a very good defensive catcher and average offensive catcher for Bobby Crosby and Ryan Church, win for the Pirtes. Lambdo came in that deal with McDonald and go check the minor leage stats, he is killing it. John Bowker, who the Pirates got from the Gians is hitting over .400 since being with the Pirates in AAA Indy. How about Jose Tabata? He was ok to get right? How about last year's draft when they got all those over slot pitchers who are tearing it up? I could go on, but you see where I am going. This management gets it. Littlefield didn't get it, Bonifey didn't get it, Huntington gets it. They are doing it right. It is a good feeling.
Sure things can happen, high school pitchers are hit or miss, but at least there is some hope. Better to get these highly talented players and actually sign them to see what happens. You have a better chance of success if you sign them then if you don't. REAL Pirate fans have some punches to throw back to the haters. What are they going to say now?
Great night to be a Pirates fan. Soak this up. We deserve it.