The Pittsburgh Pirates have signed 29-year-old right-handed pitcher Johnny Hellweg according to his independent league team, the New Jersey Jackals. Hellweg pitched briefly in the majors as a starter for the 2013 Milwaukee Brewers.

The 6’7″ righty has a 3.79 ERA ¬†over 38 innings and 36 appearances this season. He has 19 saves, a 1.42 WHIP and 62 strikeouts. Hellweg has pitched the last two seasons in independent ball, after spending part of 2016 in Double-A and Triple-A for the San Diego Pardres. He is headed to the Altoona Curve according to the tweet linked above from the Jackals.

Indianapolis is short-handed in their bullpen due to sending three pitcher to the majors earlier this week. Both Brandon Cumpton and Cody Dickson were promoted from Altoona to Indianapolis, so it appears Hellweg is just filling the vacated hole in the Altoona bullpen. He could get a chance to pitch in the playoffs for either Altoona or Indianapolis, depending on September 1st promotions and whether both teams make the playoffs. As of right now, they each sit in first place with less than two weeks left in the season.

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