Jul 20, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago White Sox right fielder Alex Rios (51) rounds the bases after hitting a grand slam against the Atlanta Braves during the third inning at US Cellular Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerry Lai-USA TODAY Sports

MLB Trade Rumors: Pirates appear close to deal for Alex Rios

The Pittsburgh Pirates have a need for a productive bat, primarily in right field, and with just a little over one day until the non-waiver trade deadline passes, Pittsburgh Pirates’ general manager Neal Huntington may have a deal in place to acquire one.

The Bucs have been linked to Chicago White Sox outfielder Alex Rios for a few weeks now and it looks like he is close to becoming a Pirate.

According to David Kaplan of CSNChicago.com, the White Sox and Pirates are getting close on a deal.

Jul 29, 2013; Cleveland, OH, USA; Chicago White Sox right fielder Alex Rios (51) scores a run in the sixth inning against the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The problem with acquiring Rios is the money factor as he notes that the cash is being worked on, and he’s not sure if the two clubs can find middle ground.  The Pirates will owe Rios over $18 million through next season if they acquire him.

The Bucs severely need an upgrade in right field and Rios would certainly provide that as he is currently producing a .272/.324/.428 slash line with 12 homers and 49 RBI. His .752 OPS would be welcome as Pirates’ right fielders have combined for the worst OPS in baseball.

In addition, Rios’ 49 runs driven in is nice considering the fact that only Andrew McCutchen and Pedro Alvarez have plated more than 37 runs on the season so far for the Pirates.

Rios also is a very good defensive right fielder and he runs well. Add his 22 steals to the Pirates’ lineup with McCutchen and Starling Marte and suddenly the Bucs become a nightmare for opposing catchers.

But if they acquire Rios it will come at a steep price, especially given the fact that the White Sox appear willing to throw money into the deal.

Rios will certainly be an upgrade but you have to ask yourself if he is enough of a difference maker to part with valuable parts of the future?

As of now there has been no word if the Pirates are also considering White Sox shortstop Alexei Ramirez, as they have also been linked to him for some time as well.

Check back to City of Champions Sports often through Wednesday’s trade deadline as we will have constant updates of all of the Pirates’ wheelings and dealings.

Tags: Alex Rios Chicago White Sox Mlb Trade Rumors Pittsburgh Pirates

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