MLB Rumors: Rafael Furcal Piques Pirates' Interest

Jon Heyman tweets that the Pirates are considering Rafael Furcal, along with other options, for their vacancy at shortstop. Higher-tier options Jose Reyes and Jimmy Rollins are out, of course. 

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Furcal would be a nice fit for the Pirates, but only at the right cost. He's 34 and he missed a big chunk of last season to injury, and he hit poorly in the first half of the season, when a thumb injury may have made it difficult to hit. His injury history is long and complex enough that he appears unlikely to be completely healthy throughout 2012. He was excellent in 2010, however, and he hit fairly well down the stretch for the Cardinals, so if he can stay on the field for 130 games or so, he might be quite an asset. 

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The Pirates really shouldn't sign him for longer than two years, and even that might be a bit much. Their best hope of getting him is probably if Furcal finds other teams' offers unsatisfactory, in which case the Bucs can swoop in with an incentive-laden one year deal with a reasonable base salary.

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For more on the Pirates, check out Bucs Dugout.

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