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Pirates get pitching

While we're debating Suppan and Zito, the Pirates are solidifying their pitching staff in such a way to suggest--nay, guarantee!--that they'll find their way to another 70-75 win season next year.

First, they finally signed Yuslan Herrera, a Cuban defector:

Herrera, 25, posted a combined record of 18-7 with a 3.27 ERA during his career in Cuba. The 6-foot-2, 200-pound hurler was a member of the Youth Cuban National Team for two years (1999-2000) and also spent four seasons playing for the Cuban National Team (2001-2004).

"Yoslan enjoyed a successful career while pitching in Cuba," said Littlefield. "He's a right-handed starter with a good arm and someone who has been very intriguing to us based on his international success."

And continuing their pillaging of the very best mediocre talent available on the international market, it looks like they're going to sign Masumi Kuwata, a 38-year-old Japanese league vet. Here are his stats; he's been at it for a really long time, but he looks to me like the Japanese equivalent of Jose Lima. It's smart of Dave Littlefield to try and compete on the international market, but I find it hard to believe Kuwata will be any better than Triple-A roster filler.