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MLB Trade Deadline: Pirates Fans Overrating Hunter Pence

Over at the Trib, Joe Starkey has a good piece responding to criticism of the Pirates' activities during the trading season.

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Yes, the Pirates missed out on Shane Victorino and Hunter Pence. I just have a hard time understanding the outrage over that.

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Victorino, a leadoff guy, is 49th in the NL in on-base percentage.

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Pence was hitting .271 with 17 home runs, sort of in the Garrett Jones ballpark. His defense, as described by one Phillies beat writer, was "atrocious at times." He is expected to earn $13 million to $14 million next season before he could become an unrestricted free agent.

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Nice player, but was Pence the guy to take the Pirates to the Promised Land? If the price for was, say, Starling Marte and Lincoln, as broadcaster Greg Brown suggested during Tuesday’s game, the Pirates did the right thing by passing.

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Right. The fanbase suddenly seems to be wildly overrating Pence, in particular, whose plays poor defense and whose offense, aside from a career year in 2011, isn't star-caliber. He's also set to be overpaid next year. He's a nice player to have around, but if you have to give up a great prospect for him, then no.

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The Pirates' fanbase also seems to be underrating Travis Snider, who has at least the chance to be a star for the four years into the future that the Pirates can control him, while also providing an upgrade on Alex Presley for this year's pennant run.

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For more on the Pirates, check out Bucs Dugout.

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