Player News - Pirates

Date: Team: Pos:

Pirates signed 1B/OF Joey Terdoslavich to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

Terdoslavich, 28, spent most of 2016 with the Orioles' Double-A affiliate while batting .246/.349/.419 with 14 homers and 61 RBI over 109 games. He hasn't appeared in the majors since 2015 with the Braves and will likely function as organizational depth for Pittsburgh.
Jan 18 - 11:54 AM

Josh Bell reported to the Pirates' minicamp earlier this month at 225 pounds.

Bell reported to spring training last year at 248 pounds, but with the help of yoga has become more lean and flexible. "I feel like the best version of myself because of yoga, so I'm going to continue. I'm all in," Bell said. "I have the body control (that), in the past, I was trying to find in the weight room. I have more coordination. It shows when I'm hitting, when I'm throwing and when I'm taking ground balls." Bell, who hit an impressive .273/.368/.406 with a 19/21 K/BB ratio in 152 plate appearances in 2016, is slated to be the Pirates' everyday first baseman in 2017. He could see time in the outfield if the club winds up trading Andrew McCutchen.
Jan 15 - 9:47 AM

Tony Watson requested $6 million and was offered $5.6 million by the Pirates when arbitration figures were exchanged on Friday.

Watson ascended to the closer's role in the Pirates' bullpen in 2016 after Mark Melancon was dealt to the Nationals, and he stumbled a bit with three blown saves in 18 chances. He's projected by to earn $5.9 million in arbitration, which is a bit closer to Watson's figure than the team's.
Jan 13 - 9:47 PM

Pirates and RHP Juan Nicasio avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $3.65 million contract.

It was the right-hander's final year of arbitration eligibility. Nicasio began last season in Pittsburgh's rotation but finished it in their bullpen, ultimately posting a 4.50 ERA and 138/45 K/BB ratio over 118 innings.
Jan 13 - 3:08 PM

Pirates and RHP Gerrit Cole avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $3.75 million contract.

Cole made noise last spring by complaining about his salary, but he gets a nice little bump here in his first year of arbitration eligibility. The righty will look to stay healthy in 2017 after missing significant time two out of the last three years because of injury.
Jan 13 - 1:44 PM

Pirates and SS Jordy Mercer avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $4.325 million contract.

Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported last week that the Pirates and Mercer were discussing a multi-year extension, but it appears they'll settle for the one year for now. He's not eligible for free agency until after 2018, so there's still plenty of time to hammer out a long-term deal.
Jan 13 - 11:48 AM

Pirates and RHP Jared Hughes avoided arbitration by agreeing on a one-year, $2.825 million contract.

He made $2.175 million in 2016. Hughes has been one of the best middle relievers in baseball the last few years. He posted a 3.03 ERA in 59 1/3 innings last year and has a nifty 2.82 career ERA in 313 games. Despite his run-prevention skills the ground-ball specialist is not the sort of high-strikeout relief ace that generates a lot of holds or saves. He will continue to be a key part of the Pirates' bullpen nonetheless.
Jan 12 - 10:19 PM

Pirates and RHP Drew Hutchison avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year, $2.3 million contract.

It's just a tick higher than the $2.2 million he received last year. Hutchison was traded to the Pirates mid-season from Toronto in the Francisco Liriano deal. He spent most of the year in the minors, but saw action in nine major-league games, putting up a 5.25 ERA in 24 innings. The 26-year-old has yet to experience much success in the majors, but his minor league track record suggests some potential for a breakout. Pirates pitching coach Ray Searage has helped several less-talented pitchers revitalize their careers in recent seasons.
Jan 12 - 8:51 PM

Casey Sadler (elbow) will throw a bullpen session Tuesday.

He's slated to throw 15-20 fastballs. Sadler missed the entire 2016 season while in rehab mode from Tommy John surgery. The Pirates brought him back in October on a minor league contract in October and he'll likely function as organizational depth this year if he's back to full health. The 26-year-old has made seven appearances in the majors in his career and posted a 4.22 ERA over 13 starts at the Triple-A level in 2015.
Jan 10 - 9:59 AM

According to Rob Biertempfel of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, the Pirates have discussed a multi-year contract extension with shortstop Jordy Mercer.

No deal is imminent, as Biertempfel notes that the talks have only been preliminary. The 30-year-old is arbitration-eligible for the second time this offseason and is expected to earn a nice raise through arbitration over the $2.075 million that he earned in 2016. If a deal is done, it would likely buy out his final two years of arbitration and possibly more. Mercer slashed .256/.328/.374 with 11 homers and 59 RBI in 149 games for the Pirates in 2016.
Jan 8 - 9:06 PM

Pirates signed C Jackson Williams to a minor league contract.

Williams spent the 2016 season in the Giants' organization where he slashed an unimpressive .199/.265/.263 with one homer and 20 RBI in 262 plate appearances. He'll add catching depth at the minor league level for the Pirates.
Jan 8 - 10:53 AM

Pirates signed C Zane Chavez to a minor league contract.

The 30-year-old backstop has been toiling behind the plate in the Independent American Association for the past two seasons. He'll add organizational catching depth for the Pirates.
Jan 8 - 10:50 AM

Pirates signed C Jose Barraza to a minor league contract.

Barraza, a former seventh-round pick of the White Sox in 2012, has spent the past two seasons playing for Lake Erie in the Independent Frontier League. He'll at catching depth at the lower levels of the minor leagues for the Pirates.
Jan 8 - 10:18 AM

Jung Ho Kang was recently evaluated by MLB's Treatment Board, which could advise he enters a treatment program.

Kang was arrested in Seoul, South Korea on December 2 after leaving the scene of a DUI accident. It was his third DUI arrest since 2009 and police are seeking indictment for the most recent incident. Entering a treatment program would be voluntary, but it would be a "mitigating factor in any discipline imposed" by the Pirates or MLB. Pirates president Frank Coonelly declined to say whether Kang's status would be cleared up by the start of spring training. "At the appropriate time, we will consider Kang's participation in any treatment program that may be recommended when determining what additional club action, if any, is appropriate," Coonelly said in an email.
Jan 5 - 9:54 PM

Jung Ho Kang was dropped from South Korea's roster for the upcoming World Baseball Classic.

South Korea manager Kim In-sik previously indicated that he was leaning toward doing so after Kang fled the scene of a DUI last month, but the final decision was made after he met with his coaches at the Korea Baseball Organization headquarters in Seoul. "As we all know, Kang has had some issues," Kim said at a press conference following the meeting. "So our coaching staff made this call (to drop him)." Kang has now had three DUI arrests since 2009 and is reportedly facing indictment for the most recent incident.
Source: Yonhap News
Jan 4 - 9:48 AM

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