As the MLB trade deadline draws nearer, everyone is wondering who will be the next big name traded and more importantly, where will they go.
One team that is sure to make deals is the New York Mets and one player that is sure to be dealt is all-star outfielder Carlos Beltran.
There are numerous squads who would love to nab the slugger, but among the most likely and willing are the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Pirates are thriving now for the first time in quite a while, and as ESPN's Baseball Tonight squad noted recently, Pittsburgh can use Beltran for a variety of reasons. Here are five of those.
Despite being six games over .500, (as of 7/19/2011) the Pittsburgh Pirates rank no better than 20th in on-base percentage, runs scored, team slugging percentage, and team batting average.
Needless to say, if the Pirates want this new-found success to continue, they could use Beltran's bat. He is hitting .287 with 14 homers and 59 RBIs.
The Pirates team batting average is a mere .247...
The Pittsburgh Pirates are classically a frugal squad, yet they have been known to dish out the big bills for big-name veterans. (see: Lyle Overbay, Chris Snyder)
Carlos Beltran is a way more established name than either of those two, and the notorious savers, the Pirates will need to spend to get Carlos on the team.
The cliche holds true too: you have to spend money to make money. Bringing in Beltran will no doubt in crease ticket sales and prices, leading to the Pirates possibly having a salary cap greater than $43 million, the lowest in the league currently.
Andrew McCutchen is an all-star and playing some of the most electrifying baseball in the league. He's a lock at centerfield.
The right and left field positions, however, have been held by a mess of players for the Pittsburgh Pirates this season. Currently, Alex Presley is playing left and Garrett Jones is playing right.
Jones is having a decent season and Presley has produced well since being brought up from the minors, yet the Pirates would definitely appreciate a more consistent and big-name player.
Expect Jones to move to leftfield when Beltran joins the team and begins playing right.
Jones, McCutchen, and Beltran is no outfield to scuff at.
The Pittsburgh Pirates have amazingly maintained a consistent and dedicated fan base despite years and years of losing season, but it seemed that this was the year the fans were beginning to tail off.
In the past weeks though, the Bucco faithful have been revitalized by the Pirates dynamic baseball.
Go big when you're on top. Bringing in Beltran would add hype to hype and lead to great gains in Pirates ticket sales and fan excitement.
I don't care if Pittsburgh had $10 to their name and Carlos Beltran cost $11. They would have to find someone to loan them that dollar and live in debt. It is truly now or never in Pittsburgh.
The Pirates have one of their most promising squads in quite some time and to be leading the competitive NL Central is nothing to scuff at.
The Pirates need to go big or go home, and if they have the ability to nab a top all-star like Beltran and possibly head into the postseason, there is no justifiable reason to why they should not.
I wonder how PNC Park looks in October?