Bucs ship Snider to Orioles
By: Sam Soergel
The Pirates traded outfielder Travis Snider to the Baltimore Orioles on January 27th. In return, the Bucs will get single-A pitcher Stephen Tarpley and a player to be named later.
The move is kind of surprising in that Snider had a decent year last season, he hit .264 with 13 home runs. He was primed to at least split time in right field with newcomer Gregory Polanco, or even start there until Polanco is ready. The Pirates roster looked set to begin the season, but the O’s were in need of outfield depth and the Bucs had enough of that to deal Snider.
By trading “Lunchbox,” the Pirates are committing to Polanco this season. Last season, he had one of the best starts ever for a Pirates rookie, but faded after that and was eventually sent back down to AAA to work on his problems. However, he didn’t stay there long as he was one of the Pirates September call ups.
The Pirates will add another outfielder to the bench, probably Andrew Lambo.
Unfortunately, Lambo has never been able to translate his minor league production over to the majors, so Jose Tabata or possibly Mel Rojas Jr. are other possibilities.
In return for Snider, the Pirates will get pitcher Stephen Tarpley. He only appeared in 13 games in single A last year in which he posted a 3.63 ERA, but he was in the top twenty of MLB.com’s Orioles prospects rankings.
Snider leaving opens the door for Polanco to take over right field and for the Pirates to have what many believe could be the beat outfield in baseball. Polanco has an amazing arm. Add him to Andrew McCutchen, one of the best outfielders in the majors, and Starling Marte, another strong arm who, with his speed and agility, could even take over the centerfield spot in the not so distant future, and the Pirates outfield could definitely be the best in baseball.