The Pittsburgh Pirates made a series of moves to their bench this afternoon, calling up infielders Max Moroff and Chris Bostick. As corresponding moves, the team optioned infielder Phil Gosselin and catcher Elias Diaz to Indianapolis.
Diaz was only up as a third catcher with Francisco Cervelli and Chris Stewart banged up. Neal Huntington had this to say on Sunday about how long the Pirates would keep an additional catcher.
“[Stewart and Cervelli are] just a little beat up right now,” Huntington said. “We wanted to get through this weekend and may look to readjust some things at some point this week. [Adam] Frazier and [David] Freese are coming back. — plus some guys optioned out who can’t come back for ten days — At some point, we’d like to re-balance the position player group.”
Meanwhile, Gosselin has struggled offensively this year, hitting for a .138/.167/.172 line in 30 plate appearances. That’s a far cry from his .277/.324/.368 line last year. He also wasn’t providing the same positive defensive value, and it was looking like it was time for the Pirates to make a switch.
Moroff has been on fire in Triple-A this year, hitting for a .258/.345/.546 line in 110 plate appearances. That includes eight home runs, which matches his season total from last year. He’s probably not going to hit for this type of power going forward, but he does have some pop in his bat — more than he’s shown in the past — and it could be reasonable to expect better production than his .119 ISO from last year.
Bostick has been hitting for a .320/.347/.495 line in 101 plate appearances in Indianapolis, with similar advanced metrics to what he put up in Double-A last season. The one key difference is that his walks have been down, although his strikeouts also took a drop and his power remained the same. He can play all over the infield, and can play outfield.
Moroff and Bostick will most likely only be up until Freese and Frazier return. The only way they could remain up is if one of them starts hitting like Jose Osuna has been doing, which might force the Pirates to make a decision on someone like Alen Hanson or John Jaso.