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Does The Zach Duke Move Indicate Something Better Is On The Way?

I'm assuming no one's crying themselves to sleep over the loss of Zach Duke, but as I wrote yesterday, I don't necessarily agree with it. The good thing here, as Pirates Prospects points out, is that the move could indicate that the Pirates have made up their minds to spend for a starting pitcher this offseason. The move to drop Duke brings back memories of the Matt Capps non-tender last year - after which the Pirates signed Octavio Dotel, softening the blow.

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Following the non-tender, Pirates' GM Neal Huntington said that the money that would have gone to Capps would go to finding a replacement.  The Pirates went on to sign Octavio Dotel for $3.5 M, and also spent almost $4 M extra on bullpen options like Brendan Donnelly, D.J. Carrasco, Javier Lopez, and Jack Taschner.
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We'll see how this turns out, but I'd bet the Pirates are going to spend fairly significant money on starting pitching this year. The question, now, is whether they can improve their defense enough for any new acquisitions to make an impact.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.