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Pirates Notebook: Team sees trade requests as fair

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DENVER -- One popular notion making the Major League Baseball rounds in the past week is that the Pirates are overvaluing their trade pieces to the extent they might not make a deal. The New York Post quoted a baseball executive as calling the Pirates' asking price as "exorbitant."

General manager Neal Huntington, following standard policy, declined to comment on that report or any other.

"I do not feel the need to address others' concerns with our process to date," Huntington said last night.

But one team official was adamant in describing the Pirates' requests as "reasonable," particularly when considering that the primary pieces on the block -- outfielder Xavier Nady and reliever Damaso Marte -- probably are the best available at their respective positions on the market.

Calls also continue to come on outfielder Jason Bay, though he is not being shopped, and his value would be even greater than Nady or Marte.

The Pirates are known to be seeking two quality prospects in any Nady or Marte deal, with a leaning toward pitching. The price for Bay would be higher.

One reason they have not been able to strike a deal to this point, the team official said, is that other teams are declaring many top prospects untouchable, perhaps many more than usual as more organizations are converting to build-within philosophies.

Still, talks remain active for Nady and Marte. The New York Mets and Atlanta Braves recently conducted conference calls with the Pirates to discuss Nady, according to one source, and many other teams are involved.

One potential foil in the Nady equation would be if Colorado's superstar outfielder, Matt Holliday, were to be thrust full-bore into the market. For now, the Rockies are simply not hanging up on callers and want to be blown away, according to someone intimately familiar with their dealings. If that changes, Holliday's value would dwarf that of Nady or even Bay.

Edited by Lil Bit Special
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