The Pittsburgh Pirates made the roster moves official that we heard after Wednesday night’s game. Alen Hanson has been designated for assignment. Gift Ngoepe has been optioned back to Indianapolis (this happened yesterday). As reported here by Brian Peloza on Wednesday, both Max Moroff and Phil Gosselin have rejoined the Pirates and will be available for tonight’s game against the New York Mets.

The DFA for Hanson is quite surprising, but his struggles, plus the limited playing time last year and this year given to him by Clint Hurdle, may work to the advantage of the Pirates. Hanson has the tools and youth on his side, but he has no Major League success and he’s out of options, so any team that picks him up would have to keep him in the majors. The obvious way around that would be for the team to pick him up and then immediately they try to get him waivers. Or a team could actually use him and see how he does while getting regular playing time for the first time in the majors.

If he can clear waivers, then that gives Hanson a chance to reestablish himself ¬†while getting regular playing time at Indianapolis. That would allow the Pirates to try to continue to develop a young player for the future, or give him a little trade value for a deal down the line. He’s worth more to a team if they aren’t forced to keep him on the 25-man roster, but he would need to regain some value first to be a trade asset.

Ngoepe really struggled at the plate after making quite an impression in his second big league game. In his last 25 games however, he had a .445 OPS and struck out in nearly 50% of his at-bats. The glove was as good as advertised and he does add value as a pinch-runner as well, but the bat will need to improve for him to have decent MLB value.

Both Gosselin and Moroff earned their promotions from Indianapolis by hitting well over the last month. Both players were up with the Pirates earlier in the season. Moroff had a very brief call-up in early May, but Gosselin struggled over the first month after making the Opening Day roster. Since being sent down, he hit .310/.337/.405 in 22 games. Moroff has 13 homers this year and a .954 OPS.

Brian Peloza wrote about both players after reporting that they were getting called up. You can find the Moroff story here and Gosselin here.

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18 COMMENTS

  1. can’t lose sleep over that move. They have like 12,000 utility players who can play 2nd base.

  2. Was it Hanson’s inability to play or was it his lack of playing time that caused this? CH never gave him a chance . No 20+ games to see what he could do. Instead he got mostly pinch running and hitting chances. No rookie can show anything with such a limited opportunity. Clear to me that they gave up on him without giving him a fair chance. I hope another team picks him up and allows him to succeed or fail by giving him a fair chance.
    Another point Cole is getting crushed again. Pirates better trade him now before every other team realizes he STINKS.

    • I go back and forth on this. Hanson was never given a serious look. Gift was given almost the same ABs with a much lower ceiling. That being said Harrison and Frazier forced the Pirates hand and Allen never did. Hanson wasn’t great but he never got a string of starts even when the opportunity came up.

  3. My friend Foo called the Hanson bust 4 years ago. Lee nice eye. I was hoping he would produce but…….

  4. I wonder how much Hanson’s minor league actions snuffed out his future with the PBC. The DFA might have been an inevitable action, but still why carry him for 2 months of basically inactivity on a major league roster.

    • Totally agree. By all accounts the kid needs to grow up and be a pro. Still, I’ll be very surprised if someone doesn’t claim him. Waaay too much upside.

      • I think this is a case of putting too high of a value on your own players. He really hasn’t shown any upside in 2 or 3 years.

  5. I think DFA automatically requires irrevocable waivers when it ‘s all said and done. Just have to hope there isn’t a team with a 2nd base void looking for a temporary/longterm fix. Sometimes you have to cut bait but it’s a sad for sure.

    • Technically, no – they could trade him (either for someone with options or someone who doesn’t need to be placed on the 25-man/40-man roster). But he needs to come off the 25-man by the end of the DFA period, so that means either a trade, removal from the 40-man and assignment to a MiL club (which requires assignment waivers), or unconditional release (which requires unconditional release waivers) since he’s out of option years.

  6. Surprised it was a DFA instead of phantom DL. Could have been on DL and still gone to Indy for a few weeks for rehab to get everyday at bats. But I guess if he does clear waivers and goes to Indy, he could get everyday at bats for a longer period of time( probably wouldn’t be called back up until September call ups, compared to a two-three week rehab assignment)

  7. for those who have all the PP books, it’s sad reading about his steady decline in rankings over the years. Our leadoff hitter of the future. In Top Five there for a couple of years. The pitching equivalent of Luis Heredia.

    • Well-put!!; He certainly has some great physical tools. I happen to know a former Pirate who has served as a spring training coach. He told me that both Hanson and Marte lack quite a bit between the ears. Given Marte’s stunt earlier this year, which in my opinion, along with Kang, has undermined this whole season, I was not surprised to hear that description of him. The fact that Hanson has great physical talent, if he really is not very intelligent, then that may explain quite a bit as to why he has failed to establish himself at the MLB level.

      • It might also mean that he will eventually figure things out and be an asset to some team. Don’t think it will be the Pirates though since they have multiple 2nd base options. I was hoping they would include him in a trade later this year and get something for him.

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