Jeff Locke Optioned to Double-A Altoona

As a part of the moves made to clear space for the arrivals of Marlon Byrd and John Buck, Jeff Locke has been optioned to Double-A Altoona, joining Tony Sanchez. The move to option the players allows the Pirates to have them back on the major-league roster next Tuesday as the organization anticipates the Curve’s season ending Monday.

Neal Huntington:

“This move allows us to give Jeff a short break. It also allows a Tony Sanchez to get back to the Major Leagues as soon as the rules permit us to do so. In addition, this gives us the opportunity to maintain a full roster until both Jeff and Tony can return to the club on Sept. 3. That is when the Double-A season is over and when the club intends to recall both players.”

If the players were sent to Triple-A Indianapolis, the Pirates would have to wait 10 days before recalling per the MLB’s option rules. Rosters expand on Sunday at midnight, so expect the two players to be back shortly thereafter.

Regardless, hearing that an All-Star pitcher has been sent down to Double-A likely comes as a surprise. Locke’s struggles have been well-documented, notably his 8.01 ERA in the month of August, and he endured a tough start last night that saw him suffer from a little bad luck as well as a couple bad bounces.

Nate Barnes

Author: Nate Barnes

Nate covers the Pirates beat for Pirates Prospects, and is an English Writing major at the University of Pittsburgh. Nate has covered the Pirates for Pittsburgh Sports Report, and covered Pitt Men's Basketball, Duquesne Men's Basketball, and Pitt Baseball beats prior to this summer. You can find Nate on Twitter @NateBarnes_ where he'll keep you updated on each and every time Clint Barmes breaks up a no-hit bid with one-out in the third inning of ballgames.

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  • CalipariFan506

    Oh wow. Hurdle won’t know what to do with himself. Six bench players?

    • Matt Beam

      they’ll all be used by the 9th inning and Clint will have to hit his RP with 2 out and 2 men on base in the 16th, oh wait that already happened this year

  • Douglas Byrd

    Does this mean that Sanchez and Locke are off the playoff roster?

  • Stephen Brooks

    I guess Pie would have to pass through waivers to be assigned, right? Still surprising that it was Locke and not, say, Hughes or Lambo.

  • Alley2Maz

    Amen to Doug Brooks question—-IS LOCKE NOW OFF THE PLAYOFF ROSTER?

  • wlenik

    Yes it means they are ineligible for the playoffs unless somebody gets put on DL before the 31st of this month

  • wlenik

    Well I should say unless someone gets put on DL it doesn’t have to be by the 31st

  • quikclipze

    I’m not 100% sure about this, but I think that Locke and Sanchez can be placed on the roster to replace two players who are currently on the DL

    • Y2JGQ2

      thats absolutely correct. Anyone currently on the 15 or 60 day dl can be replaced by anyone in the organization as of aug 31st. So we have quite a few people eligible. they can both be on the roster

  • PiratesFan1981

    With Locke being option to AA, that means Gomez starts on the 1st? Or does the roster expand then? I thought it was 3rd rosters expand? I just don’t understand how moving Locke down and keep 6 bench players. It has me baffled unless there is a move that requires a pitcher (waiver trade). Since Wandy may not be ready for the playoffs and pirates need a veteran SP to help AJ and Larino, it makes sense. I guess I will be watching MLB network a lot to see if the Pirates make another move….