The Pittsburgh Pirates have made a series of roster moves today, with the net result being they swapped out right-hander Wilfredo Boscan for shortstop Pedro Florimon. Since Florimon wasn’t on the 40-man roster, his contract had to be purchased from Indianapolis, and a roster spot had to be cleared. That roster spot was cleared by designating left-handed pitcher Jayson Aquino for assignment.
Florimon will add to the lack of infield depth the Pirates currently have. He’s a strong defender at shortstop, but can also play other positions, including third base, which he has been focusing on recently. The Pirates gave him a long look in Spring Training, but ultimately sent him down, and they were able to retain him after he cleared waivers.
Boscan was called up to provide pitching depth after Vance Worley was used as a starter over the weekend. This was the third time Boscan was called up this year, but he was never used for his Major League debut.
Aquino was acquired in a minor trade for cash considerations earlier this season from Toronto. He’s got decent velocity, working into the low-90s with good sink, and a changeup that he is comfortable with. At times he looked great, showing the upside of a guy who could be a MLB reliever, with the chance to spot start. At other times he would look like a guy who wouldn’t even reach the majors. He let a lot of outside factors throw him off his game, and at times he would abandon the fastball-first approach and rely on his off-speed stuff more often, which didn’t lead to good results.
The Pirates were working with him on the consistency issues, and blocking out the outside factors. In our recent mid-season top 50 prospects update, we didn’t have him listed, although he was in the tier for the final few spots. That means his talent level is equivalent to the 45-70+ prospect range, and it would have been closer to the bottom of that range if we actually rated it out. If the Pirates lose him on waivers, it’s not a big loss. If they retain him, then they’ll be keeping a guy who might have a shot at being a lefty reliever in the majors in the future, but is very much a project.