The pitcher that the Pirates are actively shopping around the league is Ian Snell, who asked to be demoted to Class AAA Indianapolis weeks ago.
The team will listen to offers for Zach Duke, Paul Maholm but Pirates GM Neal Huntington is not actively shopping either player to this point.
As for Snell, internal discussions have been on-going as to whether the Pirates can bring Snell back into the clubhouse.
Snell (2-1) has pitched well in the minors, lowering his ERA to 0.34 after picking up his 2nd win for Class AAA Indianapolis, Thursday night.
Snell allowed one unearned run and two hits in 6 1/3 innings with five walks and seven strikeouts.
Among the teams that have been scouting Snell over the past two weeks are the Yankees, Phillies, Mets and
Texas Rangers. The Rockies expressed interest a few months ago but they want the Pirates to pick half of the $4.25 million Snell is owed for next season.
In any trade, even with the Yankees, the Pirates may have to pick up some of Snell’s salary for 2010.
The Mets have been looking at Snell for over a year with an eye on him as a reliever.
Manager John Russell is among the advocates internally that doesn’t want Snell back in the clubhouse.
Team officials indicate it is 50/50 as to whether Snell will be dealt before the July 31st deadline. The Pirates would obviously be selling low.
More Pirates Rumors
The Pirates get a tough draw tonight as they begin a homestand against the San Francisco Giants. Giants ace Tim Lincecum (10-2) will take the mound against Paul Maholm (6-4).
Maholm has been the subject of trade speculation as the Braves, Rangers and Blue Jays have shown interest. The Pirates asking price is very high and it is highly unlikely that he will be moved.
The Blue Jays approached the Pirates about a Maholm – Alex Rios/prospect swap, but MLB executives would be shocked if the Pirates ownership would have any interest in adding Rios to the payroll, regardless of what kind of prospect the Jays are willing to move.
The Pirates top priority at the trade deadline/upcoming off-season is to add a right handed bat with 20+ homerun power.