For the first time in quite some time, the Pittsburgh Pirates are buyers. Serious buyers. Not the buyers they were last year where they added Derrek Lee and Ryan Ludwick just to make everyone happy. Those guys did not do much to help the team anyway, with The Bucs spiraling to a dreadful second half and seeing another losing season. No, this year The Pirates are in prime position to be serious buyers and win.
The biggest question out there is do The Pirates go with pitching or hitting? This question could be bounced around all month till the deadline. They could not go wrong with either way, but the best one would be pitching. The team relies on pitching and if that goes down, the season is over. The team showed in April and May that they can win with just pitching. So I say go with pitching.
Here are the three pitchers I believe The Pirates could get:
Ryan Dempster: 5-3 1.86 ERA. Dempster is the best pitcher out there on the market with The Philadelphia Phillies coming out and saying they want to sign Cole Hamels to an extension. Dempster is pitching lights-out this year so his asking price is going to be high. The Pirates could deal a pitching prospect or two (Rudy Owens and Jeff Locke) and hitting prospect for Dempster. But the better Dempster pitches, the more the Cubs will want for him.
Joe Saunders: 4-6 3.58 ERA. Saunders is the most realistic pitcher The Pirates have a chance of getting. The Pirates could get him cheap, with Saunders just coming off the Disabled List. The Pirates could get him for a prospect or two that is not going to be part of the future. And with Saunders being a lefty, he could easily replace a struggling Erik Bedard.
Wandy Rodriguez:7-8 3.75 ERA. Rodriguez would also be a good fit and has the same type of pitching style as Saunders. He would be very easy to get, with Houston wanting to rebuild and get rid of his $10.5 Million salary. That is the drawback for The Pirates though. That is a huge salary The Bucs would have to take on.
The Pirates could get anyone of those pitchers and not give up a huge piece to the future for them. But if The Pirates want to improve on their hitting, they will probably have to part ways with Starling Marte, their priced outfield prospect. The Pirates have their eyes on Justin Upton and Jason Kubel of the Diamondbacks. The Dbacks already came out and said they would not give up either one unless The Pirates throw in Marte in the deal. The Pirates could use either one of those players, but that is a huge asking price for either one. The pitching is a more pressing need anyway and a lot cheaper to find. This way, you don't mortgage the whole future and try to win this year. Because if it comes down to it, I want to see this team win for a long time and not for just one season, so you cannot go wrong with pitching.

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