The Pittsburgh Pirates have announced that they’ve claimed Travis Ishikawa off waivers from the San Francisco Giants. No corresponding move yet, but the team said they will make a move once Ishikawa arrives in Pittsburgh.
Ishikawa is no stranger to the Pirates, obviously. He started the 2014 season as part of the first base platoon in Pittsburgh, before being sent to Indianapolis. The Giants eventually signed him as a free agent, and he went on to play for them the rest of the year, hitting for a .274/.333/.397 line in 81 plate appearances. He even started for them in the Wild Card game against the Pirates, along with the rest of their World Series run.
Ishikawa has been in Triple-A this year with San Francisco, hitting for a .271/.342/.421 line in 149 plate appearances. The fact that the Pirates said there will be a 25-man roster move suggests he will be coming up to Pittsburgh. I’m guessing he will replace either Gorkys Hernandez or Steve Lombardozzi. This addition doesn’t look good for Corey Hart, since Ishikawa has some actual defensive value at first base, and can play the outfield.
UPDATE 5:40 PM: After the game, Clint Hurdle had this to say about the move:
“I think once he gets here, we will get a more definitive jargon based on the move that we might make accordingly. We liked the player. It wasn’t an easy move when we moved him out before. He’s got some experience as a left-handed bat. He plays some first base and some outfield, and he’s a guy that can help our club.”