By Zach Morrison @Zach_Morrison1 on April 12, 2014
The Pittsburgh Pirates will be buyers again for a fourth-consecutive season, and there are a few players on their MLB roster who could be shipped away to upgrade other positions. The Pirates have a few positions of depth that they could choose to trade from in order to improve other parts of their roster. These positions include the outfield and the bullpen. Here are five Pirates who could be on the move once the trade deadline comes around.
Once top prospect Gregory Polanco is ready to be called up in June, the Pirates will have an extra outfielder. If Travis Snider has trade value in June and July, teams will surely be calling, knowing the Pirates have no use for an extra outfielder.
Like Snider, Jose Tabata could be expendable once Polanco reaches the Majors. Tabata is currently the Pirates' fourth outfielder, so it would seem more likely for him to be traded. The Pirates made him available in trades during Spring Training.
The Pirates have a lot of bullpen arms and Vin Mazzaro was the odd-man out after Spring Training. The team designated him for assignment and he miraculously cleared waivers, so the Pirates were able to keep him and put him in the minor leagues.
With top pitching prospect Jameson Taillon having Tommy John surgery, it would seem less likely that Jeff Locke gets traded, but anything is possible. Locke fits in most rotations as a fourth or fifth starter, but if a team overvalues him because he was an All-Star in 2013, the Pirates won't hesitate to sell high on Locke.
Despite very low expectations, Pirates first baseman Travis Ishikawa has actually played fairly well so far in 2014. However, if the Pirates acquire a new first baseman or if Andrew Lambo starts to rake in Triple-A, Ishikawa will immediately become trade bait. If they can't trade him, the Pirates would simply designate him for assignment.
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