3. Jim Bibby: 1978-1983
Now this one may be a shocker, mostly because I imagine most of our readers don’t really know who Jim Bibby is, but for five seasons, Bibby was one of the steadiest arms in the Pirates’ rotation.
Bibby initially came to the Pirates in the off-season before the 1978 season and all he did during his six seasons with the Pirates was go 50-32 with a 3.53 ERA, 3.71 FIP, and was worth 8.0 WAR. In 1979, he helped the Pirates win the World Series by putting up a 2.08 ERA in the postseason.
He followed that up by having the best season of his career in 1980. He went 19-6 with a 3.32 ERA, making the All-Star team and finishing third in Cy Young Award voting. Bibby might not be among the most well known Pirates’ players, but he may have been the first truly great free agent signing in franchise history.