The past few days all Major League Baseball transactions trackers have been on high alert as rumors quickly began to swirl and permeate, ultimately resulting in a flurry of moves, which quickly transformed the Hot Stove from a slow simmer to a rapid boil. Over a twenty-four hour span the San Diego Padres acquired both Blake Snell from the Rays and Yu Darvish from the Cubs, only sacrificing two top 10 prospects in the process; one of whom, Luis Patino, falls within the MLB top 100. The Friars Frenzy also involved the signing of KBO star Ha-seong Kim, a 25 year old shortstop that has slashed 294/.373/.493 with 133 home runs and 134 stolen bases in a seven year career.
As all this was taking place Pirates Fans were continuing to lament the Josh Bell trade, while hoping that one of their players, namely Joe Musgrove or Adam Frazier, would somehow be mentioned in the next sentence from the MLB journalistic elite. Landing spots for these, and a few others, were feverishly identified. Lists of coveted prospects where strewn throughout posts on multiple platforms; just wishing, wanting and waiting for the next bit of news to involve the Pittsburgh Pirates. Of course there was a cursory bone thrown in their direction as Musgrove was once again floated as the most likely trade candidate due to interest from the teams that may have lost out on the Snell Sweepstakes, and now the Darvish (Salary) Dump. These statements were not made by questionable sources and I would never want to downplay the possibility of Mugrove, or any other Pirate being traded. however, until I hear that there is an agreement in place, a specific partner has been identified and there is an inkling as to who the prospects could be coming back in return, I will try to be as patient and realistic as possible.
We all know that there are multiple teams interested in Big Joe and some of these talks could be ramping up to more than just feeling each other out. This also happened at the most recent trade deadline with nothing to show for it. Adam Frazier has been rumored to be on his way out for a year now; inducing several publications to pretty much guarantee Frazier would be gone at one time or another, yet he is still here. For some of you these rumors and speculations are ways to engage in your fandom, and believe me it can be quite a rush at times, so I am not asking you to change the manner in which you choose to become involved in the sport and specifically the Pittsburgh Pirates. This is something I would never do. No one can tell me what kind of fan to be, so I would never impose my will on anyone.
Once again, this is just a cautionary tale, that sometimes you might not be happy with what you wish for and to be respectful of how other Pirates Fans react to the moves that are made by our favorite team. I am ultimately of the belief, after a long process, that I am a fan of name on the front of the jersey and not the name embroidered on the back, but not everyone thinks this way or needs to. This is not to say I don’t cheer for or wish the best for individual players; it’s just a place I have come to in my fandom. I also know that most likely the eventual outcome of many moves the Pirates will make between now and Opening Day will not be known for a few years, give or take, so instant reactions could easily be proven wrong if given time to marinate.
Sure most of you are probably set in your ways between Spend Nutting, Win Nutting and Hopelessly Optimistic, but it doesn’t mean that we haven’t all be through the same experiences in our Pittsburgh Pirates Fan Journey and that we don’t all have the same end goal in mind. We need to keep this in perspective for the almost inevitable trades that are upcoming, as well as the presumably difficult season(s) ahead.