The Pittsburgh Pirates are shopping outfielder Jose Tabata in trade talks, according to Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. The team is also willing to listen to offers for relief pitcher Vin Mazzaro, and Bryan Morris also may be a candidate to be traded before Opening Day.
Tabata, 25, hit .282 with 6 HR and 33 RBI for the Pirates last season after a down year in 2012 that saw him hit only .243 in 103 games. He is likely to lose his job to top prospect Gregory Polanco in the near future, meaning that the Pirates could look to maximize his value by trading him soon. Pittsburgh has Starling Marte and Andrew McCutchen in left and center field, and could utilize Travis Snider in right field until Polanco is ready to join the major league club.
The Pirates are likely to search for a backup catcher to replace Chris Stewart, who will see Dr. James Andrews tomorrow regarding what the team fears is a torn meniscus. The Red Sox are known to be shopping Ryan Lavarnway, but don't seem to match up with Pittsburgh due to existing surpluses in the outfield and bullpen. The Yankees, who are known to be shopping Francisco Cervelli to multiple teams looking for catching help, and could show interest in Morris or Mazzaro as they look for bullpen help.