Pirates Acquire Chris Bostick for Taylor Gushue and Cash

The Pirates have announced that they’ve acquired infielder Chris Bostick from the Washington Nationals in exchange for minor league catcher Taylor Gushue and cash considerations. Bostick was added to the 40-man roster, and to make room, Josh Harrison has been transferred to the 60-day disabled list. However, Bostick won’t be added to the active roster.

Bostick is a 23-year-old utility player who has played second, third, and left field this year. He has also played shortstop in a smaller role as recently as 2015 (only six games) and has made a few appearances in right and center field. He made the jump to Triple-A this year, after putting up an .818 OPS in 297 plate appearances in Double-A. He struggled with a .559 OPS in his first appearance in Triple-A in 242 plate appearances. He was the Nationals’ 25th ranked prospect heading into the 2016 season, according to Baseball America.

Prior to being with the Nationals, Bostick played for Oakland, where he was their 24th, 20th, and 18th ranked prospect following the 2011-2013 seasons, respectively.

Bostick has two option years remaining, so this looks to be a move to add infield depth for the 2017 season. The Pirates do have Gift Ngoepe and Max Moroff on the 40-man roster, along with Alen Hanson, who is out of options next year. I wouldn’t start predicting that this move means anything other than adding depth prior to the off-season, especially when it involves the future for other players in the organization.

Gushue shows some promise behind the plate, with good athleticism and average-to-above average arm strength. The arm hasn’t always translated to a high caught stealing total, although in the times I’ve seen him the last two years, Gushue has done a lot better when pitchers move quicker to the plate, and has really gotten hammered by slower deliveries. He’s got some offensive potential, with some good raw power, but that hasn’t fully translated to the game, and he’s more raw. He has a good approach at the plate, limiting strikeouts and posting a decent walk rate, while showing a .131 ISO this year in Bradenton. He’s a good guy to take a gamble on, but in the Pirates’ system, he’s held back by Elias Diaz, Jin-De Jhang, and had strong defender Christian Kelley pushing to take time away from him next year.

Overall, the Pirates traded a player who probably wasn’t in their long-term mix at catcher, and was about to be losing playing time to some other lower level catchers. They received a guy who has been a top prospect in recent years, can play all over the field, and can add to their MLB depth next year.

Tim started Pirates Prospects in 2009 from his home in Virginia, which was 40 minutes from where Pedro Alvarez made his pro debut in Lynchburg. That year, the Lynchburg Hillcats won the Carolina League championship, and Pirates Prospects was born from Tim's reporting along the way. The site has grown over the years to include many more writers, and Tim has gone on to become a credentialed MLB reporter, producing Pirates Prospects each year, and will publish his 11th Prospect Guide this offseason. He has also served as the Pittsburgh Pirates correspondent for Baseball America since 2019. Behind the scenes, Tim is an avid music lover, and most of the money he gets paid to run this site goes to vinyl records.

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so let’s trade all our minor league catchers? 😉

joe s

Trade makes little sense to me. Team now has a glut of utility players and lacks catchers with hitting ability. Just stupid if you ask me.


I agree 100%. A real head-scratcher. The Bostick types seem to be a dime a dozen. But in the end, neither player is likely to make an impact at the major league level, so it’s all academic.

Bill W

Yes Joe S how do you think I feel – I have the GUSHUE home jersey!


Strange trade considering our shortage of catchers and abundance of utility types with suspect bats….


Rotowire showed they designated Josh Harrison for assignment for Bostick. Doubted it, so came here to get the correct take!

mitch t

They designated JHay to the 60 man DL. Not for assignment. He’ll be back on the roster before they need settled and Harrison will be the 2B because he is a good defensive playa who can help with the bat.

Bruce Humbert

Would not have objected if the tried waiver on J-Hay – someone else can overpay him for the rest of his contract.

mitch t

I’d give Bostick a 30% chance to make the MLB at some point next year (probability based on his Florimon-osity) with a 15% chance of eventually earning a MLB pension. His bat usually catches up with his league but it’s not special enough for a glove that doesn’t hold up at SS. Gushue gets a 1% chance for next year with a 5% chance of collecting those precious pension benefits but he has more options left. Given the flood of mediocre middle infielders the Bucs have now I don’t know why they made the trade but they did upgrade talent wise.

Hey, this is how the Reds got Brandon Phillips so you never know.

Bobby L

No future battery of Tyler Glasnow throwing to Taylor Gushue.

Another catcher bites the Bucco dust.

Michael D

Another blunder trade. Pirate catchers get hurt so what do they do. Trade minor league catchers.


Alan Hanson appears to be on his way out. I wonder what the hell he did to tick off the powers that be?


Seemed to have issues with the manager at Altoona a few years ago. The manager was let go eventually. But I think his most important problem is he hasn’t shown a good bat in two years at AAA. For a potential starter in MLB you would like to see a mid .800s OPS at a minimum. This year Hanson had a .707 OPS. He’s have to be Ozzie Smith at SS to have a MLB starter future if you are projecting from that. And while he is a good 2nd baseman, he doesn’t have either the consistent on base or power potential to be excited about him. Best future for him as far as the Pirates are concerned is as part of a package of prospects to obtain a starting pitcher.

IC Bob

Another pass the trash trade deal. Helps balance out our MiLB teams I would think.


Another Why did this happen…..

Blaine Huff

Sometimes you read what you want to…

I saw the headline and read Tyler Glasnow instead of Taylor Gushue…a minor heart attack followed.

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