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Pittburgh and St. Louis stay with rosters they have at trade deadline

Two of the best teams in baseball are in the National league Central division. The Pittsburgh Pirates are currently in first place in the division 2 ½ games ahead of the second place St. Louis Cardinals.

Both clubs and their respective general managers spent long hours as the trade deadline approached on Wednesday afternoon making calls, in an attempt to improve their rosters as the season heads to the stretch run.

However, when the sellers of players dictate the terms of a deal, it is hard for two buyers’ executives to not feel they are doing their best from nothing.

Both GMs for the Pirates and Cardinals told the press when the deadline had passed why they refrained from making an impact trade prior to the deadline.

Pittsburgh did acquire Robert Andino an infielder from the Seattle Mariners later Wednesday night, while St. Louis traded away Marc Rzpeczynski a left-handed reliever to the Cleveland Indians for a shortstop at the end of the deadline.

Third place Cincinnati also did very little at the trade deadline.

Between the two teams, Pittsburgh was more pressured to make something happen. The Pirates start August for the first time 23 games over .500 since 1972 and the first time in first place since 1992.

Of recent, the flurry of moves at this time has shown to not necessarily produce the result desired. Last year, Pittsburgh acquired Travis Snider, Gaby Sanchez, Chad Qualls and Wandy Rodriguez prior to the trade deadline.

Those four reinforcements could not stop the Pirates from losing 39 of their last 59 games during August and September freefall.

This season, team executives said the priority was making upgrades on offense, which is currently ranked near the bottom half in the league in runs, hits, batting average and total bases, and practically at the top in strikeouts.

Pittsburgh looked at a number of possible hitters including Alex Rios, Mark Trumbo, Justin Morneau and Ginacarlo Stanton, but they quickly either found out the players they like were not available, cost too much or were not that much better than the current talent on the team.

Any time a deal mentioned the Pirates top prospects like Tyler Glasnow, Gregory Polanco or Jameson Taillon, the Pirates GM second-guessed the possible move.

Without a big trade, manager Clint Hurdle said he has several hitters on the team’s current roster who can contribute. Neil Walker has an average of just .242, but smacked a home run in their 5-4 on Wednesday versus the Cardinals.

Management also liked Andrew Lambo their outfielder in the minor leagues who has 27 home runs between Double A and Triple A this season.

The Pirates feel comfortable as well with not adding another reliever even though Jason Grilli is on the disabled list with a sore forearm.

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