Since it is a down time for the Pittsburgh Pirates after the Winter Meetings, knowing they won't be signing anyone of importance, I have decided to fill the time by looking at what Bucs GM Neil Huntington has accomplished throughout his tenure in Pittsburgh so far.
I know many of you have said I'm a Huntington apologist and am not critical enough of the job he has done, but I'm gonna break down everything and maybe either my mind will change or yours will, but I'm still at the point where I feel all the moves have been necessary and talent has been brought into the system.
Here is a rundown of what I will do.
Part 1- Huntington's Career. basically his bio and where he came from
Part 2- The Draft Picks - Looking at what NH has brought into the system through the draft
Part 3- The Signings -Looking at who NH has signed on the open market so far
Part 4- The Trades- Looking at and breaking down all of NH's trades so far
This part will be short. Just giving you a quick background of where NH has come from until he took the Bucco's Gm job. As far of his playing career, Nh was a second team D III All-American his senior season. When he was hired, he became the fourth D III player hired as an MLB GM, following Josh Byrnes in Arizona, Bill Smith in Minnesota and Brian Cashman of the New York Yankees. Those guys have had sucess, so there is no need to knock NH for playing at the D III level.
Upon breaking into baseball, the 40 year old Huntington is about to enter his 19th season in the game. he broke in with the Montreal Expos in 92 and soon became their Assistant Player Developement Director. He then joined the Cleveland Indians in 1998 as the Director of Player Developement. he held this title for four seasons until he was promoted to Assistant General Manager in 2002. NH held that job until 2007 when he replaced Dave Littlefield as the General manager of your Pittsburgh Pirates.
As everyone knows by now, when NH got here, Littlefield pretty much left his a mess that needed cleaned up. That is simply not a quick fix and many unpopular moves would need to be made. I have had to opportunity to interview NH on a couple of occasions before and the man has a very good head for the game. Hopefully his moves will pan out and he can get some money to play with or Huntington will eventually ffollow Littlefield out of Pittsburgh.
Feel free to express your opinions on NH the person. We will look at the job he has done in the draft in Part II of this, which I will post in a few days.