— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) July 29, 2012
This is an interesting rumor.
Adding a bat like Shin-Soo Choo would be amazing. Currently, Choo is hitting .291/.378/.484 with 12 home runs. Choo also still has one year left of team control as he does not become a free agent until after the 2013 season. This type of production is also pretty consistent over the course of his career. Since 2008, Choo has posted an OPS+ of 151, 136, 147, 108, and 143 with the MLB average being 100.
It is certainly an intriguing offer to think about because there is no question that Choo’s presence in the Pirates lineup would be a pretty significant upgrade. Also, Choo wouldn’t be just a rental player, as he would be controlled through all of next season.
Here’s my take on it. If Choo were to become a free agent after the 2014 season, I would pull the trigger on this deal. Marte for two years and two months of Choo. However, Marte for one year and two months of Choo seems like a lot. The Pirates have control of Marte through the 2018 season, at least. So it comes down to if a year and two months of Choo is worth six years and two months of Marte. I say no.
Another scenario that crossed my mind was perhaps if Choo were traded, he would be willing to sign an extension, buying out a year or two of his free agency. After thinking about it, that is pretty highly unlikely. He’s not too far away from getting a big-time payday. Also, he is represented by Scott Boras, who will definitely be steering him towards testing the free agency market.
It’s an interesting debate and there are definitely pros and cons to either side of the argument.