- Dan Szymborski, ESPN Insider
Just a few days after acquiring Marlon Byrd and John Buck from the New York Mets, the Pirates continued a more active August by picking up Justin Morneau from the Minnesota Twins. In return for Morneau, a free agent this offseason, the Pirates give up outfielder Alex Presley and baseball's most popular player -- the player to be named later.
Before the concussion and its lingering effects that derailed Morneau's career back in 2010, a trade of the first baseman would have been considered a major one. Since 2010, Morneau has hit .256/.316/.412 with 40 home runs in 1,401 plate appearances, unimpressive numbers for a first baseman even considering the significant drop-off in league offense and the pitcher-friendly characteristics of Minnesota's new home, Target Field. The Twins aggressively shopped Morneau in July, but were unable to find a team that would take on Morneau's contract and give a prospect in return.
Dan Szymborski gives his reaction to the Pittsburgh Pirates' trade for Justin Morneau, writing that although the deal was a smart one for the team, it might not have much of an impact on its playoff positioning.