With the Pirates likely done improving the team via free agency, there still could be a trade or two that could better the club, not only in the short-term but more importantly the long-term.
The Pirates front office has made it known to clubs that it would be open to dealing both catcher Ryan Doumit and starting pitcher Paul Maholm.
Most Pirates fans would have hoped that Doumit would have been dealt by now. While that could still happen before the beginning of the season, it seems more likely that he heads to Wrigley Field on April 1 as a member of the 25-man roster. What’s more likely with Doumit is that the Pirates wait until another team has a need created by an injury and then look to deal him.
On the other hand, Maholm’s stock could be rising.
Many major league teams could use a veteran left-hander in their rotation come opening day. One team in particular may be willing to pay the Pirates price. That team could be the New York Yankees.
This would make sense for both organizations.
The Pirates currently don’t really need Maholm or his salary. The club added a couple of arms in the offseason, and the chances of competing for the NL Central crown are slim. Dealing the southpaw could also create a spot for either Charlie Morton or Brad Lincoln, who both deserve another look.
A Maholm deal makes even more sense for New York. Andy Pettitte’s retirement created a void in the Yankees' rotation that likely needs to fill by Opening Day. With the offseason the Boston Red Sox had, the Yankees may be forced to overpay for a middle-of-the-rotation type pitcher to compete for the AL East crown.
Maholm could flourish by being dealt to the Yankees. Despite the short porch in right field, Maholm throws strikes and competes. He could do very well with a competitive team that can score runs and catch the ball behind him.
While it’s just a thought, this could be a win-win situation for both clubs if it ever gets discussed.