MIAMI, FL - JULY 01: Shane Victorino #8 of the Philadelphia Phillies hits during a game against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park on July 1, 2012 in Miami, Florida. The Marlins defeated the Phillies 5-2. (Photo by Sarah Glenn/Getty Images)
The Pirates will probably be looking for bats as the July 31 trade deadline looms.
With the Pirates in first place and with the July 31 trade deadline on the horizon, expect to see the Pirates connected to a number of top players. It's not at all out of the question that they could pursue starting pitchers are relievers, but expect them to especially be in the hunt for outfielders, even though this is a fairly pitching-heavy market. Jose Tabata and Alex Presley have been disappointments this year. Starling Marte will soon be promoted from the minors to take one of the corner spots, so that leaves the other corner spot as the most obvious spot for an upgrade.
Ken Rosenthal says in a recent video that the Pirates "are aggressively pursuing hitters" and are interested in Shane Victorino. He also reports the Bucs are "very high on" Padres outfielder Carlos Quentin.
Quentin is off to a great start this season (he didn't play until late May), and he certainly has a great bat, but Rosenthal notes that the Padres won't give him up cheaply, and it's hard to see why they would -- he's only making $7 million this year, so there's no pressing reason to dump his salary.
Victorino is owed $9.5 million this season. He isn't hitting well right now, but he might be a good buy-low candidate, especially since he's a good defender. He would potentially be a nice fit in PNC Park's spacious left field.
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