July 25, 2008
The Damaso Marte closing era was a blast in Pittsburgh, but as we expected, it's come to an end. Marte and Xavier Nady were shipped to the Yankees tonight, which leaves a ninth-inning opening for the Bucs.
On merit, John Grabow makes the most sense. Tyler Yates's control would be a terrible fit for the ninth inning, but you never know what John Russell might do. As always, the first guy who gets a shot and coverts might just run with the gig. Holding leads of 1-3 runs over one inning isn't that hard to do.
Anyway, as we said earlier in the week, our money is on Grabow, at least until Matt Capps comes back. See if he's out there. Go check right now.
As for the Nady side to this deal, it's a pretty good indication that the Yankees don't expect much (if anything) from Hideki Matsui the rest of the year. It will be interesting to see if the departure of Nady encourages the Bucs to recall OF Andrew McCutchen anytime soon, their top prospect. He's at .280 with Triple-A Indianapolis this year, with nine homers and 26 steals. (Update: It turns out Steve Pearce is on the way up and will take over right field for the Pirates. Pearce, 25, is having an ordinary year at Indy: .258, 11 homers, eight steals.)