LaRoche and Young Elect Free Agency
Andy LaRoche and Delwyn Young have both elected free agency, after both players were designated for assignment last Friday. Both players had more than three years of service time, giving them the right to decline their outright assignment to the minors.
LaRoche arrived in Pittsburgh as the center piece in the Jason Bay trade. In his time with the Pirates he hit for a .226/.296/.341 line in 935 at-bats. In 2009 he had a .258/.330/.401 line and strong defense, leading to a 2.4 WAR. However, both his hitting and defense tanked in 2010, and he was left without a position with Pedro Alvarez and Neil Walker arriving in the majors in 2010, taking up third and second base.
Young was acquired in early 2009 after being designated for assignment by the Dodgers. He combined for a .255/.312/.393 line in 545 at-bats. Young was best used as a pinch hitter and an occasional starter off the bench, although he had no true position on the field. The Pirates experimented with him at second base in 2009 after Freddy Sanchez was traded, but Young’s defense was horrible, and his offensive numbers struggled in an every day role, leading the Pirates to acquire Akinori Iwamura during the off-season.