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Pirates could explore long-term deal for Neil Walker

Dec 1, 2012, 2:45 PM EDT

Neil Walker AP AP

The Pirates’ efforts to sign Neil Walker to a long-term contract last summer went nowhere, but Tom Singer of reports that they could give it another shot this offseason.

The timing is right for negotiations, as Walker is arbitration-eligible for the first time this winter as a Super Two player. The 27-year-old batted .280/.342/.426 with 14 home runs, 69 RBI and a .768 OPS in 129 games this past season. Walker’s .770 OPS is eighth-highest among second baseman since 2010 (min. 1,500 plate appearances), so while he’s not a star, he’s been plenty productive for Pittsburgh.

Walker missed some time with a back injury down the stretch and was diagnosed with a herniated disk in September, so the Pirates will surely want to get a read on his progress before they commit long-term.

  1. paperlions - Dec 1, 2012 at 3:05 PM

    Over the last 3 years, Walker has been a slightly better offensive player than Kinsler or Phillips….no he isn’t a star, but it isn’t because of his offensive production from 2B…it is because he’s a poor defender at the position.

    • redguy12588 - Dec 1, 2012 at 3:36 PM

      Looking at his stats, he’s improved every year, he’s about middle of the pack, he’s pretty good

  2. prosourcetalk - Dec 1, 2012 at 3:55 PM

    Get it done Pirates

  3. mj1818 - Dec 2, 2012 at 8:02 AM

    Paperlions I wouldn’t say he is poor.. More so middle of the pack average but if he hits .280 every year that’s ok and acceptable at the major league level.

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