By John Perrotto
The Pirates have five teams trying to acquire left-hander Paul Maholm in the final hours before the non-waiver trading deadline at 4 p.m. Saturday.
The Detroit Tigers, New York Mets and New York Yankees have being showing interest in Maholm, who is also being pursued by the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres. What makes Maholm particularly attractive to other clubs is that he is signed through next season and his contract also includes a club option for 2012.
The Pirates do not feel the Tigers or Yankees match up with their needs, a young starting pitcher who is ready to step into the major-league rotation and a shortstop prospect. The Pirates were turned down by Detroit when they asked for right-hander Rick Porcello and Class AAA Toledo righty Andy Oliver.
However, the Pirates are hopeful they might be able to pry either Class AA Binghamton right-hander Jenrry Mejia or Class AAA Buffalo shortstop Ruben Tejada from the Mets. Both are 20 years old and made their major-league debuts earlier this season.
Mejia is 0-0 with a 2.70 ERA in two starts for Binghamton after the starting the season with the Mets and compiling a 0-2 record and 3.25 ERA in 30 relief appearances. Tejada is hitting .284 with one home run and 13 RBIs in 59 games for Buffalo after batting .212-0-5 in 35 games with the Mets.
—John Perrotto is editor-in-chief of BaseballProspectus.com and baseball columnist for the Beaver County Times—