A day after we announced that the Pittsburgh Pirates released eight minor league players, Pirates Prospects has learned that the total group was expanded to 15 players released this week. Here are the seven additional players, along with a brief write-up on each of them.

Julio de la Cruz is the big ticket name in this group, signing for a $700,000 bonus in 2012, which is more than the other 14 released players received in combined bonuses. De la Cruz never turned into the power hitting third baseman that the Pirates thought he could be when he signed. The odd thing about him is that he was one of the best hitters at Pirate City each of the last two years in Extended Spring Training, but couldn't hit against the same level of pitching once the real games started. De la Cruz hit .218/.286...

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