Argenis Diaz and Pedro Ciriaco are two very similar players on the Pirates 40-man roster. Both are shortstops. Both have been praised for their defensive abilities. And neither are very good at hitting baseballs.
In a somewhat surprising move, the Pirates designated Zach Duke, Andy LaRoche and Delwyn Young for assignment on Friday to make room on the 40-man roster. It was not surprising that those players were let go, bit I figured the front office would hang on to them until the non-tender deadline in an attempt to make a trade.
“Work fast, throw strikes, change speeds” – Ray Miller
This was the philosophy of former Pirates pitching coach Ray Miller. Does it cause pitchers to perform better? Well, we may be close to finding out. FanGraphs is now tracking each pitcher’s average time between pitches.
Per Jon Morosi of FoxSports.com: The Pirates are comfortable with their internal options at closer, Evan Meek and Joel Hanrahan. But one source suggested that Pittsburgh could deal one of the two and sign a replacement.
As you probably know, Pirates beat writer Dejan Kovacevic has been taking some heat this week for his Rookie of the Year selections. Dejan left Atlanta Braves right fielder Jason Heyward off his ballot, voting for Buster Posey, Neil Walker and Jose Tabata instead.