The Pittsburgh Pirates have claimed RHP Jeremy Hefner from San Diego and C Brian Jeroloman from Toronto, the team just announced. Catcher Matt Pagnozzi has been outrighted to Indianapolis. That leaves four open spots on the 40-man roster for Rule 5 candidates to be protected.
Hefner pitched for the Padres' AAA affiliate in 2011, putting up a 4.98 ERA and a 120:61 K/BB ratio in 157.1 innings. The right hander turns 26 in March, and throws an 89-91 MPH fastball that tops out at 93, along with a slider, and a changeup. All three pitches grade as average. He was the 15th best prospect in the Padres' system according to Baseball America prior to the 2011 season. He profiles as a back of the rotation starter.
Jeroloman hit for a .240/.335/.295 line in 271 at-bats in the PCL last year,...
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