Well, it happened. The Twins traded longtime first base fixture Justin Morneau to the Pittsburgh Pirates. In return, Minnesota will receive outfielder Alex Presley as well as a player to be named later or cash. From a strictly baseball perspective, this is a trade that makes sense. Morneau is going to be a free agent at the end of the year, and he isn’t going to help the Twins do anything this year. Thanks to a great deal of bad luck and injury, the Twins could use a guy that could play center field through the end of the year. Alex Presley can do that, and he won’t really block any of the elite prospects coming through the system. A lot of people are excited by the potential PTBNL, but I think frankly, it won’t be much. The big thing is that Pittsburgh is taking on salary, and the Twins shouldn’t be looking for much return.
The real issue I have isn’t that Morneau was traded, or that the return wasn’t enough. It’s sad to see him go, but there is a chance that he could be back, and even when he retires, he will be close to the organization for decades to come, and as I said, the return is fine. My issue was that he was traded to the Pirates. A lot of people are rooting for them this year, but I want you to remember that Pittsburgh fans are the same insufferable people that root for the Steelers and Penguins. Many of these people are the same people that have given Ben Roethlisberger a pass for his indiscretions. Those that aren’t Pitt fans are often the same people that clamored in support of Joe Paterno and Penn State.
I am obviously only speaking from my personal experience, and I hate to make generalizations about an entire population, but those from the area that I do know are far too influenced by sports. They don’t need another sport to become insufferable about. Especially if they are using a former Twin to get there.
Screw the Pirates.