PITTSBURGH (93-7 The FAN) – With Gerrit Cole making the fourth start of his career tonight, Pirates General Manager Neal Huntington joined Starkey, Miller and Mueller to talk about what the future holds for Cole as other members of the rotations get healthy.

“Once everyone gets healthy, we want to do the best we can to put the best pitching staff in Pittsburgh, but as we’ve very well seen this year, we need more than five starters.  So we’ve got to do everything in our power to retain our depth,” he said.  “Sending Gerrit Cole to the minor leagues to retain that depth is a baseball decision that we may make at that time, or if we make the decision that we roll the risk of putting two other guys in the bullpen because they’re not optionable, how long before they’re not ready to be conditioned to be major league starting pitchers again?”

Huntington also talks about last year’s trade deadline moves and the claims by some that they screwed up the chemistry in the clubhouse and played a role in their second half collapse.

“There’s the balance of you want to add to what we have, but you also don’t want to take away from what we have,” Huntington said. “This group believes in each other, fights for each other.  We’ve got the ability to go through this pre-trade deadline exploration period and try to identify what’s the best move we can make for this organization, and you’re right, it may not be to make a move.  But it might also be to make a pretty significant move.  It might be to make a smaller move or two.”

Huntington also addressed the future for Pedro Alvarez as he becomes arbitration eligible next year, Clint Hurdle’s prediction before the season that his team could win 95 games and what they saw from Tony Sanchez during his time with the big league team.

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