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Think The Pirates Are Kicking Themselves??


The Gun Of Bavaria

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http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/5487934

Tigers reap reward as Pirates regret losing Shelton

It's bad enough that the Pirates are 0-6. But it's even worse when you consider this: Tigers first baseman Chris Shelton, the surprise slugger of the first week, was a Pirate until the team left him unprotected and lost him in the 2003 Rule 5 draft.

Shelton, 25, led his low Class A league in on-base and slugging percentage in '02. He did the same thing in his high Class A league in '03. But after that season the Pirates failed to include him on their 40-man roster, enabling the Tigers to draft him for the grand sum of $50,000.

The Pirates actually had five players selected that day, drawing gasps and chuckles from the assembled executives and media at the winter meetings. Shelton was the only loss they came to regret, and the most embarrassing part is that the Pirates easily could have protected him; they had three open spots on their 40-man roster.

The Tigers carried Shelton all season in '04 rather than allow the Pirates to reclaim him for $25,000. He hit 18 home runs in 388 at-bats in '05, but no one could have predicted his spectacular start in '06: 14-for-20 with five homers, two doubles and two triples.

To think, the Pirates grew concerned in '03 when Shelton failed to hit a home run in 122 at-bats during his first crack a Class AA.

They also were worried that Shelton could not adequately play a position in the National League after trying him at catcher, first base, third and left field.

The Tigers are fine with him at first, thank you very much.

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Bonderman was also drafted by the Oakland Athletics.

Imagine a Zito-Harden-Bonderman -Hudson-Mulder rotation with Blanton in the wings if they had kept them all.

Good point shelter. They'd have a sick rotation. Bonderman is the only one of the guys to come over who managed to make it.

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Bonderman was also drafted by the Oakland Athletics.

Imagine a Zito-Harden-Bonderman -Hudson-Mulder rotation with Blanton in the wings if they had kept them all.

Some rotation. And all young guys. If money was not an issue, that rotation alone would make the A's the pre-season favorite to represent the AL in the WS every year.

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This has been way too common for the pirates. If they don't lose a star player like this, they will trade them away after they break out so they don't have to pay for them. I was suprised they didn't trade away Bay after he broke out or Jack Wilson after his all-star year. Granted we got a good deal for trading Giles, if we had Aramis Ramirez, Jason Schmidt, and Shelton back we would be a much better team.

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