MLB The Show Rebuild: Pittsburgh Pirates


Daniel Corrigan | May 24th, 2020

Hello, welcome to the first installment of what will most definitely be the most time-consuming series I have ever done. I will be rebuilding baseball teams through MLB The Show 20’s franchise simulation.

In this series, I will be taking teams that are “in a rebuild,” and I will try to take them to the World Series. I will have full control of the rosters, free agency signings, call-ups/downs, and trades. Here’s the catch, I only have five years to do so. If I win the World Series before that five-year window, then the rebuild will end early.


I will try to keep it as realistic as possible depending on what team I’m using. For instance, I will not be throwing around $300 million contracts with the Pirates but I would think about it with a team like the Giants or the Mets.

I will also try to keep trades as relatively realistic as I can. I won’t be trading all of my top prospects for Mike Trout and Cody Bellinger and cheating that way. I will be making smart moves that fit how the team would handle trades.


So without further ado, let’s begin.

Year 1 Start: This team stinks.

Roster: Look It up Yourselves 

The MLB The Show rosters are up to date, prospects included so putting the Pirates’ current Roster here seems like a waste of space, but then again so does this paragraph explaining why I won’t put the current day Pirates Roster. I don’t know, sue me. You know what, Unless some big Roster changes come like I cut a player or make a trade/signing ill let you know, deal?

Anyway, this team leaves me in a hard spot. I have a couple players to trade away like Josh Bell and Chris Archer but I don’t have enough good prospects to trade for some MLB ready talent. Let’s just see how the first month goes.


April 30th Record: 11-20

Ok, not terrible but we are completely throwing this first year. I will check back in at the trade deadline.

Trade Deadline: 44-64, Last in NL Central

Ok time to get busy. First, Bell is out of here. I need some young talent and Bell should land me a few pieces. With this team, I’m going for a two-year window to win it all at the end of the Pirates rebuild. I’m also shopping Chris Archer and Jameson Taillon.


Pirates Trade: 1B: Josh Bell —-Nationals Trade: 1B: K.J. Harrison,  RP: Austin Voth,  SP: Erick Freddie

Pirates Trade: SP: Jameson Taillon—- Angels Trade: SP: Jamie Barria, SS: Connor Justus, 3B: Taylor Ward

Pirates Trade: SP: Chris Archer—- Yankees Trade SP: Brian Keller, RP: Luis Cessa

How about that, I turned three players coming up on contract extensions for eight prospects. As you can see, I emphasized pitching I have a good feeling about this rag-tag group of Pirates. I won’t go too much further into the 2020 season, ill let it play out.

End of 2020 Season: 69-93…….


In case you’re curious, the Dodgers swept the Yankees in the World Series.

Free Agency 2020:


All other players under club control were brought back, This free agency class was not strong enough to build anything real with the limitations I have.

Start of 2021

Welcome back to another season of Pirates baseball!

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All-Star Break: 41-56, fourth in the NL East


Nah but for real, we are 19 games out of the first-place Reds, we need to hit the trade market hard again. This time, I want MLB players, not prospects.

Trade Deadline:

Pirates Trade: LF: Chris Sharpe, 2B: Kevin Newman— Indians Trade: CF: Oscar Mercado

Listen, the Indians offered me this at the deadline, I couldn’t refuse a young CF who still has plenty of years of club control. I also needed to clear some of the money that Newman was eating up.

BLOCKBUSTER TRADE: Pirates Trade: CP: Keone Kela, SS: Connor Justus, SP: Erick Fedde—–Dodgers trade: C: Keibert Ruiz

My Jaw hit the floor when I was offered this. An MLB ready, young, super talented, top prospect was just given to me. I have now acquired a starting CF and C without giving up too many of my best prospects. If I can hit free agency hard, I might start swinging for the fences with trades.

End of 2021: 69-93…..again.

A September that saw the Pirates winning two games really put the nail in the coffin. However, we did not finish last, the stinky Cardinals did. As the hypothetical owner of the Pirates, I am raising a banner for that feat. Hell, Raise the Jolly Roger once more!

Also, the Dodgers swept the Yankees again in the World Series.

2021 Free Agency


That right, Daddy Warbucks is steering the Pirate ship now.

But bringing in this veteran talent, and reuniting McCutchen with the Pirates seems like a good idea because guess what. All this young talent is getting the call to come play with the big boys in 2022.

Start of 2022

I have a good feeling about this season boys. I have yet to call for the lowering of the Jolly Roger. Lets Ride!

*Simulates the rest of the Offseason*

Turns out the Pirates are so god damn poor they couldn’t afford their entire roster. So We are in trouble. Some of my prospects just disappeared. I currently have four players in Single-A ball. I might fold the franchise before the fifth year.

End Of May: 27-35

Ok, not bad. We are not in last place at least. Also, Juan Soto is hitting .458 with 25 HR and 70 RBI. So that’s a pretty neat thing I noticed.

Trade Deadline: 51-59

We are only 4.5 games back for first. We are going all in. Chips in the center, Hands in the middle, Jolly Roger in the sky, let’s have a season, fellas.

Ok so no trades made sense here. I think we will let this squad play out and spend the next two years going all in. I did however, Sign Adam Ottavino to a one-year-deal to beef up the bullpen.

September First: 65-75

We are in last place….

I also now have zero (0) Single-A players??? I have no idea where they went. I am in full control of the rosters, I have not released anyone.

End of 2022: 75-87

*Insert Jerry Seinfeld feet on table smoking a cigar gif*

We did not finish last again, so things are on the up and up. And once again the Dodgers beat the Yankees in the World Series, but this time in seven games. Clean it up @Yankees.

Meanwhile, at the Pirates Operations Facility

I just got the phone call, I was told to bring my playbook and any other team issued materials. I was just fired as the Pirates GM. This rebuild is over. I will sign with another team and simulate the next two seasons just to see how this stupid Pirates franchise does.

To be fair, I did spend more money than my cheap billionaire owner would let me. I’m sorry for caring, Pittsburgh.

Some Personal News:

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As *Redacted* would say, “WITCHHUNT.”

2023 Season-

The Rockies finished 62-100, a -48 win differential. But I don’t care about that, I’m basically just cashing checks and watching the Pirates from afar.

The Pirates finished 76-86, which is cool, I guess. Lol, enjoy watching the playoffs from a distance.

The Final Season:

So that team that shall not be named didn’t sign any big names this time. Ha! Pathetic! As the cesspool called NBA Twitter would say, Poverty!

I feel like this rebuild has taken a weird turn, I didn’t intend it to be this way. I wanted it to be a good, fun, realistic challenge. In case you are wondering I am writing this article as I am doing the challenge. So I will write one thing and the next thing I write might be a whole different tone.

OH, now this is rich! The Pirates offered me, K.J. Harrison, in a trade package. Need I remind you, he was the centerpiece in the Bell trade when I was Captain of that ship. NO DEAL @Pirates. I have half a mind to trade Nolan Arenado to an in-division rival.

Anyway, MY Colorado Rockies finished 71-91 and the Pirates finished 86-76, 2 GB of a wildcard spot. While the Pirates are on the rise, it has been five years, and the franchise file has been deleted.


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