Bucs Offensive Woes Continues, Hinske Traded To Yankees

Well yesterday the Pirates took on the Cubs at PNC Park and were overmatched by pitcher Rich Harden. Zach Duke pitched well enough to earn another victory, going 7 innings and giving up 3 earned runs, but the Pirates just couldn’t do anything against Harden. They did collect 9 hits, but couldn’t score a run on any of them. Their only run came on an Andy LaRoche no-out doubled that was followed by 2 groundouts to the right side and Jack Wilson got the only Pirates RBI. It was a pretty frustrating game to watch, although the Pirates did have some great defensive plays that provided some excitement. Adam LaRoche laid out to knock a ball down in the 2nd that saved 2 runs and ended the threat. Andy LaRoche also ungracefully handled a ball that was absolutely smoked by Derrek Lee, both plays grazed the Sportscenter Top 10. 

The big news this morning is the trade of Eric Hinske to the New York Yankees. Hinske has just been very… ineffective for the Pirates this year. He is hitting .265 with just 1 homer and a .368 slugging percentage. The Pirates got two A ball prospects for him, which is probably more than he was worth. Their names are Casey Erickson and Eric Fryer. 

Erickson looks more promising than Fryer. He’s a 24 year old right handed pitcher who has career numbers of 15 wins, 8 losses, a 3.07 ERA and 8.6 k’s/9. Erickson was taken in the 10th round of the 2006 draft by the Yankees, the same year they drafted Ian Kennedy and Joba Chamberlain. I can’t find much about his pitch arsenal or any of the scouting info, but I’m sure that stuff will pop up around the Pirates blogs as the days moves along. 

Eric Fryer’s numbers really don’t impress me. He is a career .286/.333/.344 hitter in 206 games. He plays catcher, outfield, and a little bit of first base. He hits and throws righty and is 23 years old. He was drafted in the 10th round of the 2007 draft. He has a little bit of speed as well with 30 career stolen bases. 
All of this clears the way for Garrett Jones to make his debut with the Pittsburgh Pirates in the next couple of days. He has been called up and will be in the dugout tonight against the Cubs. Jones has been having a great season in AAA while hitting .307/.348/.502 with a very nice .802 OPS. Jones has only been in the big leagues once before with the Minnesota Twins. There, he hit .208/.262/.338 with 2 HR in 84 plate appearances. I wouldn’t expect much from Garrett Jones, but we won’t have to depend on him for much as he will just be a bench guy. He’s 28 years old so it’s not like he’s a big time prospect that needs playing time. He can play first base but I wouldn’t expect him to get any playing time there over Adam LaRoche and Steve Pearce. Jones will maybe get one start a week in right field but I wouldn’t expect anything more than that. He might surprise us though, it seems like he’s locked in this year. Let’s Go Bucs!

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