The 2013 Pittsburgh Pirates had an amazing season. The Pirates and their fans saw the longest losing streak in North American history finally come to an end. The fans of the Pirates also saw their team play games and win in their beloved PNC Park. This was an absolute team effort, and the city of Pittsburgh wants more and more of it!
Over the past few days many of the men that helped make this season possible were awarded for their efforts. First, Manager Clint Hurdle won NL Manager of the Year which is a well-deserved title. Hurdle has been the biggest cheerleader of this team since joining the club three seasons ago. He makes his players and the fans feel that the good times are here to stay. Then if that was not enough, Pirates center fielder Andrew McCutchen won the NL MVP Award. This title was the first for the Buccos since Barry Bonds won it in 1992. McCutchen, as Clint Hurdle says, “Can beat you five different ways,” and “Cutch is the baddest dude” on the planet. The Pirates almost won three major awards with GM Neal Huntington almost winning the General Manager of the Year Award.
With all of that being said, all of these awards can do nothing but help the team as a whole. In the years past the Pirates could barely even sniff these major awards. Yes, Freddy Sanchez won a batting title and there was Jason Bay who won the NL Rookie of the Year in 2004, but management did nothing to help the team after these wins.
In this offseason look for free agents to want to come and play in Pittsburgh. The Pirates will have more TV revenue to use as well as all the money they saw come in from the playoffs. With players like McCutchen, Russell Martin, Starling Marte, and Pedro Alvarez, players will be more eager to consider the Pirates than in years past. Last year the Pirates brought in catcher Russell Martin and Francisco Liriano to help bolster the roster, and I can see the same happening this offseason.
Yes, all the money is a good thing that they brought in, but now the team has some clout to go out there and persuade guys that this organization is a successful one and not just the whipping post like it has been in the years past. I don’t see the Pirates going out and getting the top tier free agents that are out there, but look for the Pirates to get guys who will complement the players they already have and prepare the team for another playoff run.