Pirates Fans Were Taken For Suckers, But McLouth Has a Future In Atlanta

Anthony EmersonAnalyst IJune 8, 2009

PITTSBURGH - APRIL 13:  Nate McLouth #13 of the Pittsburgh Pirates swings at the pitch during the Opening Day game against the Houston Astros at PNC Park on April 13, 2009 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by: Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Pirate fans, you were cheated by your management again. You saw another good young player with potential slip through your fingers to a better team. Nate McLouth is now like Jason Bay and Xavier Nady last year. Good, young outfielders traded to better teams.

Did you hear the excuse that Pirates management gave their fans? "We thought his defensive skill was going to break down, so we wanted to trade him while his trade stock was high."

That's a lie.

McLouth was a Gold Glover and an All-Star last season. And the front office expects us to believe that?

The Pirates front office is only interested in making a profit. I'm amazed that they haven't traded Jack Wilson and Freddy Sanchez. "Why don't we trade Ian Snell for Ian Kennedy? They have the same first name, so that means they'll have the same amount of success!" That's the kind of mentality that the Pirates have toward their players.

Listen, I'm a Pirates fan. Not as much as I'm a Red Sox fan or a Nationals fan, but I do enjoy watching the Pirates. And when the Pirates traded Bay to the Red Sox last year, I was ecstatic.

But then I realized that my other team had traded its best player, and I felt like another losing season was in front of the Pirates. And they just accepted Craig Hansen and Brandon Moss for Jason Bay? Weeks before, when the Pirates had traded away the first part of their stellar outfield, Nady (along with reliever Damaso Marte), to the New York Yankees for close to nothing in return.

By 'close to nothing' I mean terrible pitchers Ross Ohlendorf and Jeff Karstens, along with outfield prospect Dan McCucthern, who was called up from AAA Indianapolis just after the McLouth trade.

Then the Red Sox and Dodgers forced the Pirates hand in the blockbuster trade deadline deal of 2008. The Dodgers got Manny Ramirez, the Red Sox got Jason Bay, and the Pirates got nothing. Brandon Moss is only in the MLB because there's no one better in the Pirates organization. Hansen wouldn't be in the bigs, either.

If the Red Sox excellent farm system could figure him out, nobody can.

But McLouth could have a bright future ahead of him, despite going 0-4 in his first game with Atlanta. Nady hit .330 with the Pirates in '08, and hit .268 with the Yankees.

I know it's a huge drop off from his Pirate numbers, but he played 59 games for New York, and he had played only briefly in the Big Apple with the Mets in 2006 before being traded to the Pirates, and still, playing for the Mets isn't anything like playing for the Yankees.

Nady also had 12 home runs with the Yankees, while having 13 for the Pirates in 2008, ringing up a grand total of 25 homers for '08.

This year, Nady has been on the DL a lot. He's only played in seven games this season. However, he's hitting .286 with eight hits with two RBI. Nady should put up decent numbers this year, considering that he's only played in seven games.

Bay was absolutelyon fire in 2008 after the trade. Bay was hitting .282 before the trade, .293 after it. He 64 RBI before the trade, 27 after it. I now that his RBI totals are no where near each other, but Bay had over half his Pittsburgh total in RBI in just 49 games with the Red Sox, after playing 106 with Pittsburgh.

And Bay is on fire to start this year. Bay is hitting .277, with 16 home runs, and 55 RBI with 56 hits in 56 games.

So, with all that in mind, when they traded Nate McLouth and got absolutely NOTHING in return for him (really, the GM thought that was worth giving up McLouth for Gorkys?) the Pittsburgh Pirates faithful were once again taken for suckers by the pirating management. 

But do not fret, Pittsburgh Pirates fans. You can try and take pride in the fact that after your team, of whom you live and die with, you obsessively watch while looking over every statistic in the morning newspaper, and continually tears you heart out by trading its best players, whenever you trade, good, young players, they always go on and thrive and have brighter careers, after they leave you behind.

It's all the managements fault.


The latest in the sports world, emailed daily.