The Indianapolis Indians were eliminated from the Triple-A playoffs last night, losing the deciding game of the International League championship series. Today, the Pirates are calling up outfielder Keon Broxton, Pirates Prospects has learned through a source.
Broxton returned to Altoona this year, posting a .302/.365/.464 line in 204 plate appearances. This followed a 2014 season where he was acquired from Arizona for cash considerations, then posted a breakout season at the level with a .275/.369/.484 line. He was finally moved up to Triple-A this year, where he put up a .256/.352/.423 line in 367 plate appearances.
There was an interesting situation involved here, as Broxton would have been eligible for minor league free agency following the season. By calling him up, the Pirates get his two remaining option years and six years of control. That means he can remain in the organization next year as an outfield depth option out of Triple-A, or an option for the fourth outfield spot in the majors.
Broxton has some speed, with 28 stolen bases in 37 attempts in Triple-A, along with the range to play center field. He should be used in the short-term as an additional pinch runner. He’s not just a speed guy though, as he does hit for some power, with a .167 ISO in Triple-A. He also gets on base a lot via walks, making him a high OBP guy. The downside is that he strikes out a lot, with a 28.6% strikeout rate in Triple-A. This combination means that he could be a three-true-outcomes type player, with the exception that he doesn’t hit a lot of home runs, but instead provides power through extra base hits, while also providing defensive value and value on the bases.
No word yet on who is coming off the 40-man roster to make room, although my guess is that the Pirates will place Jung-ho Kang on the 60-day disabled list, which would allow them to bring up Broxton without losing anyone.