Summertime and the trading is easy for Pirates GM Neal Huntington. The Bucs struck for two more deals on Wednesday – the Ian Snell swap came in the afternoon, the Freddy Sanchez move dropped in the evening. If you're just just catching up to it all, Sanchez heads to San Francisco while the Pirates get 20-year-old pitching prospect Tim Alderson.
Sanchez has been battling a sore left knee but San Francisco apparently isn't worried about that going forward (the Giants medical staff examined him twice this week). Sanchez's .300 bat fits nicely for the Giants, who have been scuffling at the second-base spot all season. He's expected to bat second in the lineup. It's interesting to note that although the Giants are 12 games ahead of the Pirates in the standings, the Bucs have outscored them by 16 runs.
The price on the former batting champ wasn't cheap; Alderson was the 22nd overall pick in the 2007 draft and he's having a solid run at Double-A this year (3.47 ERA, 3.29 K/BB ratio). But this isn't someone likely to be rushed to the majors, not at his tender age. We're a few years away from putting Alderson on the redraft radar.
With all the shuffling in Pittsburgh, don't forget to re-examine the current lineup and look for potential fantasy options. Delwyn Young(notes) has been getting a lot of playing time of late (he batted third Wednesday) and qualifies at second base and the outfield. In a deeper mixed league, he could settle in as the type of player you want off your bench, capable of playing in a few spots, a little pop, a little speed.
Lastings Milledge(notes) looks ready to join the fun, too – according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette he's expected to get recalled Friday, just in time for the series against his former Washington mates. I can't imagine the Bucs would promote Milledge if they had no intention of playing him, so it's time to get back on the waiver wire and see if he's available. Seriously, check right now – your comment can wait. He's a potential difference-maker for the balance of the season.