GM Ben Cherington discusses Pirates offseason

Pirates general manager Ben Cherington held his season-ending press conference today, discussing several offseason topics extensively with Jason Mackey of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and other reporters. As the Bucs went 62-100 to post their seventh straight losing season, Cherington felt progress had been made among the team’s younger players, both on the field and in the clubhouse.

This young core is key to the Pirates’ rebuilding strategy, but veteran help can be added to specific positions. Cherington noted that first base, starting rotation and catcher are all areas to some degree, although in the case of the catcher position, the general manager said “we feel more and more satisfied with this position, organizationally, certainly. At the major league level, I really like the work that Jason Late and Tyler Heineman did.”

This could count on a new agreement with Roberto Perezalthough Cherington said that the Pirates “keep the door openabout Perez’s status. Signed to a one-year, $5 million deal last winter as a veteran backup behind the plate, Perez played just 21 games before undergoing hamstring surgery that cost him the rest of his career. the season. That makes it two consecutive injury-plagued seasons for the veteran support, and while Perez is a two-time Gold Glover with a strong defensive record, his recent ups and downs health situation will certainly bring his free agent price down, if he does. he gets a guarantee. treat at all.

A lower price, of course, increases Perez’s chances of staying in Pittsburgh, as payroll is once again a key factor in the Bucs’ offseason decisions. Cherington again repeated that “I truly believe that we have the resources to win and once we start winning we will be able to sustain thatand yet, until that bend is made, there doesn’t seem to be any expectation for hackers to make major outlays.

Pittsburgh fans have long criticized the Pirates’ lack of spending, as the property didn’t stretch the budget much during the Bucs’ last baseball winning streak (three straight playoff appearances from 2013-15). The promise of increased spending down the road isn’t exactly welcome for a fan base eager for success, but Cherington said his front office is focused on the current realities of his rebuilding process.

I don’t think focusing on payroll is the right thing to focus on in a city like Pittsburgh, in a place where a winning team isn’t going to be built like elsewheresaid Cherington. “I understand where the question is coming from but the way we wake up every day and do our jobs is just not the thing we think about.”

As such, the Pirates won’t break the bank to meet their off-season needs, although first base has traditionally been a position where solid production can be found at a lower price. The same could be true for rotation, and the Bucs had success in this area last offseason with Jose Quintana‘s bounced back the year after signing a one-year, $2 million free agent contract. In terms of a general wishlist, Cherington hopes to add more strikeouts to the pitching staff and more runners on base for the roster as a whole, not just at first base.

Cherington said in August that Derek Shelton would return as Pittsburgh manager, and on Friday Cherington added that the coaching staff would also be retained, aside from “to consider that someone has an opportunity elsewhere or something like that.” On the contrary, Cherington hinted that the Bucs could add more staff to what is already a thorough coaching staff.

About Terry Simmons

Check Also

Does Phytage Labs Ear Ringing Relief Scam People?

Studies suggest that tinnitus is around 32% in the United States. So, it goes without …