Lincoln has had a great year, really finding his spot in the bullpen. There’s no doubt he’s been great, but bullpens are fairly easy to piece together. We obviously wish him the best up North.
Snider is 24 years old, and made his debut in 2008, when he was 20. Travis was drafted in the first round of the 2006 draft, just 12 picks after Lincoln was drafted. He hit .301 in 73 at-bats in 2008, but his numbers have dropped off since. He spent the most time in the bigs in 2010, when he played in 82 games. He posted a .255 batting average, with 14 home runs and 32 RBI – both career high’s. The main concern with Snider is that he’s been so inconsistent. In the minors, he’s absolutely raked. He hit .325 in 61 games at Triple-A this year, and hasn’t hit lower than .275 in the minors. The only problem is that he hasn’t quite been able to figure it out in the majors.
If you’re looking for a definitive answer as to whether the Pirates won or lost this trade: they won it. There’s no doubt. Snider is under control through 2016, and is only 24. Best case, Snider reaches his full potential and hits 25-30 HR with 80-90 RBI a year. Worst case, he’s a bust and doesn’t do much to help the team. To give a realistic prediction: he’ll probably max out at 25 homers a year, and will hit in the fifth or sixth spot in the lineup. Hitting with the short RF at PNC Park will certainly help, and there’s really no way he can do much worse than the OF production (other than Cutch) that the Pirates have gotten this year.
As for the immediate impact this will have on the Pirates, Snider will start in RF, and probably won’t produce right away. This is a process, we won’t see his full potential for another year or so. That would solidify an outfield of Marte-McCutchen-Snider, which isn’t bad at all. Jones and McGehee will most likely platoon at first.
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