Unfair advantage over the Federation Escort (which it already has due to cloak giving you at least some chance to not be the focus-fired-with-every-offensive-cooldown-the-other-team-has, target).
Crap I just picked a T2 raptor Thought I would try mixing it up a bit, oh well.
Don't worry about it, you'll make enough money from PvP to buy whatever ships you feel like flying
make it the science equivilant of fed ships.
The Bird of Prey already sort of fills that role. Sure, it loses a Bridge Officer slot, but it can equip cannons, is roughly twice as maneuverable, has Cloaking capability (including the Battle Cloak), and has a lot of flexibility with the universal officer slots. It's not as durable as the Federation Science Vessels, but considering I can be Rapid Fired from 8.9k shields and 22.5k hull to wreckage in about 6-7 seconds, it can't be that much worse in the BoP.