First baseman Hayden Hurst has been placed on the Voluntarily Retired List by the Pittsburgh Pirates. He was drafted in 2012, taken in the 17th round and signed for $400,000, which was one of three late round over-slot signings by the Pirates that year. Hurst was drafted as a pitcher that could touch mid-90’s with his fastball out of high school, but injuries limited him to one outing back during the 2013 season and he had major control issues that day.
When he returned to action in 2014, he was playing first base, though most of his game time was as a DH. The 21-year-old Hurst hit .245 last year in 15 games in the Gulf Coast League, with no extra-base hits and a 3:26 BB/SO ratio. He was in Extended Spring Training this year competing for a spot on one of the short-season teams, with a return to the GCL likely.