First baseman John Bowker, one of the six players acquired during the Pirates' eventful trade deadline on Saturday, looks back on his time with the Giants, and forward to his future with the Bucs:â†µ
"I'm excited," said Bowker, reached on his cell phone before traveling to join the Pirates' Triple-A club. "Obviously, I wanted to be a Giant. But I also want to get the opportunity to play every day. I think there's going to be more opportunity over here."â†µ
Right-hander Joe Martinez, who joined Bowker in the deal for left-hander Javier Lopez, also will join Triple-A Indianapolis at Norfolk, Va. Bowker said he spoke with Pittsburgh GM Neal Huntington, who told him they didn't have a plan for either player yet. But it's likely that both will be called up on Sept. 1, if not earlier.â†µ
The line about Huntington not having a plan for Bowker or Martinez is interesting, because love him or hate him, Huntington is a guy who has no shortage of plans. It's great that Bowker is excited, but it's not completely clear how he'll fit in with the Pirates, either, despite the fact that they're worse than the Giants. Bowker can play first or the outfield, but the Pirates have steady starters at all four of those positions, plus Ryan Doumit, who will play more at first and right field now that Chris Snyder has been acquired to catch. We know that Bowker can hammer minor league pitching, because he's been doing that for years, so for the Pirates to send him to the minors makes it seem like Huntington isn't just being modest: he really doesn't have a plan for Bowker. It could be that Huntington was surprised at how much the Giants were offering for bullpen lefty Javier Lopez, and took the deal without worrying too much about the particulars.