McLouth pessimistic about long-term deal
Pitcher Paul Maholm sounded optimistic Friday that he and the Pirates might soon hammer out a multi-year contract. But outfielder Nate McLouth seems resigned to taking just a one-year deal, which may require a contentious arbitration battle.
Both Maholm and McLouth are in the first year of arbitration eligibility. Their agents have exchanged salary figures with the Pirates -- there is a difference of more than $1 million in each case -- and an arbitrator would pick one number or the other if their cases go to a hearing.
"I was comfortable exchanging numbers, because it's not like the talking is over," Maholm said. "We're still negotiating. The long-term deal is still on the table."
The Pirates would like to lock up Maholm for at least four years, which would buy out his first year of free agency. Neither side has divulged long-term salary offers, but Maholm said the numbers "aren't far apart."
Last season, Maholm notched a team-high nine wins and made a career-high 31 starts.
Arbitration hearings are scheduled for Feb. 1-21 in Florida. Teams and players can continue to negotiate until the arbitrators announce a decision in a case.
|Pitcher Paul Maholm and outfielder Nate McLouth will have to take the Pirates to arbitration if they cannot soon work out contracts:|
|Player||2008 salary||Player request||Team offer|
|Maholm||$424,500||$3.8 million||$2.65 million|
|McLouth||$425,500||$3.8 million||$2.75 million|
Maholm hopes things can be settled within a few days. He'd like to have a deal in place by Feb. 13, when Pirates pitchers and catchers will report to spring training in Bradenton, Fla.
"I play baseball for a living, so I shouldn't be complaining," Maholm said. "I've got friends that I grew up with who are dealing with issues because of the (slumping) economy. So you're not going to hear any complaints out of me, no matter how it goes."
The Pirates also offered McLouth a multi-year contract earlier this offseason. Unable to find much common ground, talks broke down.
"I wasn't surprised that it didn't get done," McLouth said. "There's still a chance something could get done -- maybe a slim chance. But there's a chance. There's the security of a multi-year deal, which is nice. But there are certain advantages to going year-by-year."
The Pirates already have avoided arbitration with five other players. Adam LaRoche, John Grabow, Tyler Yates and Zach Duke got one-year deals. Ryan Doumit received a three-year contract.
"The guys who have signed were able to find numbers that work for them," McLouth said. "I wasn't able to get the number yet that work for me."Additional Information:
New uniformsThe Pirates on Friday unveiled three new uniforms for the 2009 season. The home white and road gray jerseys will have sleeves, a change from last year. The revamped alternate jersey -- black with a large 'P' -- replaces the unpopular red jersey and will be worn on selected home games. It's the first time in 74 years the script 'P' has appeared on the Pirates' jerseys. A pinstriped uniform, the same style as last year, will be worn on Sundays and day games.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Rossi: Pirates plan to carry Hurdle deep into playoffs
- Harrison’s ‘magic’ has helped to carry Pirates into MLB’s postseason
- Pirates notebook: Martin feels ‘pretty good,’ will start vs. Giants
- Volquez latest rehabbed arm to get ball on big stage for Pirates
- Scouting report: Giants at Pirates
- 20 improbable Pirates wins in 2014
- Pirates analyst Kent Tekulve recovering after heart transplant
- Pirates set sights on making postseason play ‘an every-year deal’
- Pirates bench coach Banister interviews for Astros manager job
- Tekulve to throw out 1st pitch of Pirates’ postseason