Wilson willing to revisit no-trade clause
Pirates shortstop open to allowing deal to Tigers
PITTSBURGH -- On Thursday, Jack Wilson had to laugh about the flurry of voicemails he received in the minutes after the Newark Star-Ledger Web site posted a report that Wilson had been traded to the Tigers just after noon ET.
"Amazing, huh?" he joked.
While Pirates and Tigers officials quickly debunked the validity of the Star-Ledger story, Wilson continues to wait, cognizant of the fact that he is still the most likely Pittsburgh player to be dealt this offseason.
However, if a deal with Detroit does eventually come to fruition, Wilson will have some say. The Tigers are one of the six teams listed in Wilson's no-trade clause, though Wilson said on Thursday that he would be open to revising that list, which was formed years ago.
"I'm open to anything," Wilson said. "If the Pirates are in the position where they are ready to trade me, then it means that they have already made plans to move on without me.
"It's a family decision for me. I have to talk with my family before any decision would be made, but I'm open to pretty much anything."
In other words, it would be surprising if Wilson did reject a proposed trade to the Tigers.
Wilson will be in Las Vegas during the Winter Meetings next week as part of an previously planned trip. However, with the interest that both the Dodgers and Tigers have in the veteran shortstop, there's a good chance that he'll be having an impromptu press conference before the Meetings are over.
Wilson, the longest-tenured player on the club, has already prepared himself for leaving Pittsburgh, a city that he has called home since 2000. Though he missed the last month of the '08 season with a fracture in the tip of his right index finger, Wilson pinch-hit in the team's final home game at PNC Park just in case and left to a standing ovation.
Wilson's most likely destinations are still Detroit or Los Angeles. The Tigers nearly acquired Wilson in a 2007 Trade Deadline deal and have continued to pursue the veteran shortstop since. The fact that Detroit has a young shortstop, Cale Iorg, likely only one year away from the Majors, makes Wilson an intriguing short-term fit.
A Major League source confirmed on Thursday that discussions between Detroit and Pittsburgh are ongoing, though the two sides are not yet close to announcing a deal.
The Dodgers remain in pursuit of Wilson as well, with the Pirates appear set on requiring that young Dodgers shortstop Chin-Lung Hu be included in any deal.
Wilson is in line to make $7.25 million in 2009 and has an $8.4 million club option for '10.
While Wilson waits to learn which Spring Training camp he'll be arriving at in February, the eight-year veteran has gotten a jump-start on his offseason workout plans. His index finger has fully recovered from the hairline fracture he suffered.
"I missed a month, so I didn't want to miss any other time," he said. "I got right back to working out in October."
Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.