Should The Orioles Have Pursued A.J. Burnett?

Should The Orioles Have Pursued A.J. Burnett?

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It’s a done deal.  Finally.

A.J. Burnett’s tenure with the New York Yankees is over.  He’s a Pittsburgh Pirate.

Pittsburgh sends outfielder Exicardo Cayones and right handed pitcher Diego Moreno to the Yankees and take on $13 million of the remaining $33 million left on Burnett’s (horrible) contract.    The Pirates will pay him $5 million this season and $8 million in 2013.  Not too shabby.

Burnett will likely become the Pirates opening day starter and joins a pitching staff with former Oriole Erik Bedard, James McDonald, Jeff Karstens, Charlie Morton and Kevin Corriea.

After their finish last season, it’s hard to remember just how successful the Bucs were during the first half of 2011.  The Pirates grabbed sole possession of first place in the NL Central on July 16 with a record of 48-43, but finished the year 72-90.

I think that adding Burnett will only improve on their success last season, but still don’t see them finishing ahead of the Cardinals, Reds or Brewers in that division this year.

With the Yankees eating so much of Burnett’s contract, I have to wonder how he would have fit in Baltimore.  I watched him struggle for three seasons in the Bronx and was thankful that the Orioles didn’t overpay him in 2009, but at $5 million it could have been worth it given the current state of the Orioles rotation.