J.B. SHUCK, CENTER FIELDER
|Born: June 18, 1987
Drafted: 6th round, 182nd overall pick, 2008 (Astros)
How Acquired: Minor League Free Agent
College: Ohio State University
WTM’s PLAYER PROFILE
|Shuck has spent quite a few seasons shuttling back and forth between AAA and the majors as a backup outfielder. He makes good contact and commands the strike zone very well, but has very little power. He put up very good OBPs in the minors, but his walk rate has been much lower in the majors as pitchers aren’t afraid to challenge him. He runs very well, but it hasn’t translated well on the bases or in the field. He plays all the outfield positions and has a lot of experience in center, but defensive metrics like UZR and DRS consider him to be average defensively in the corners and below average in center. In the minors, Shuck attempted to steal a lot, but had very shaky success rates. Over the course of his major league career, Shuck has hit left-handed pitchers a little better than right-handed pitchers. The Pirates signed him to a minor league contract for 2019, with an invitation to major league spring training.
Shuck hit very well in his New York-Penn League debut. He split his time between center and left, as he’d do for much of his career.
Moving up to high A, Shuck put up good numbers, but it came in the high-offense California League. Baseball America ranked him as the Astros’ #13 prospect after the season.
Shuck continued to hit well and show good plate discipline in AA, but his power dropped off considerably. BA rated him 18th in the Astros’ system after the season.
In AAA, Shuck continued hitting much as he had the year before. The Astros called him up in August.
Spending all year in AAA, Shuck had much the same season again. The Astros removed him from the 40-man roster in November. He elected free agency and signed a minor league deal with the Angels.
Shuck made the Angels’ opening-day roster and spent the season with them. He was the team’s most frequent left fielder. He continued to hit for average, but his walk rate dropped sharply from what it had been in the minors and he showed little power.
After opening the season in AAA, Shuck spent most of April with the Angels. He went back to AAA at the beginning of May and stayed there, apart from a two-game callup, until the Angels put him on waivers in early September. Cleveland claimed him and he spent the rest of the month with the Indians. The Indians then lost Shuck to the White Sox on a waiver claim after the season.
Shuck spent the season with the White Sox, apart from a short disabled list stay and a rehab in August. Shuck didn’t get a great deal of playing time, making 29 starts.
Shuck spent most of April and May in AAA, but then spent the rest of the season with the White Sox. He got more playing time than the year before, including 59 starts, mostly in center, but he struggled to hit. The Sox removed Shuck from the 40-man roster after the season, and he became a free agent and signed with the Twins.
Shuck spent the entire season in AAA, playing everywhere in the outfield. His hitting declined. After the season he became a free agent again and signed with Miami.
The Marlins called Shuck up a little over a week into the season. He remained with them until he was designated for assignment in early July. He re-signed with Miami and spent the rest of the season in AAA. He hit very well in AAA and very little in the majors.
AAA: 0-0-0, 3.79 ERA, 1.68 WHIP, 19.0 IP, 8.1 BB/9, 10.9 K/9
Shuck had a big spring and ended up on the opening day roster when Lonnie Chisenhall opened the season on the injured list. Shuck remained with the Pirates until early May, hitting as badly as he always has, and then was designated for assignment. He cleared waivers and was assigned to Indianapolis. He’d gotten into one blowout loss as a pitcher while with the Pirates. When he went back to AAA, he played the outfield and, from mid-June on, pitched out of the bullpen. He didn’t pitch badly except that he had trouble throwing strikes. The Pirates did not call him back up.
Shuck will be a free agent after the season.
|Signing Bonus: $150,000
MiLB Debut: 2008
MLB Debut: 8/5/2011
MiLB FA Eligible: 2019
MLB FA Eligible: 2022
Rule 5 Eligible: Eligible
Added to 40-Man: 8/5/2011 (since removed)
Options Remaining: 0 (USED: 2012, 2014, 2016)
MLB Service Time: 3.166
|June 5, 2008: Drafted by the Houston Astros in the 6th round, 182nd overall pick; signed on June 12.
August 5, 2011: Contract purchased by the Houston Astros.
November 2, 2012: Outrighted to AAA by the Houston Astros; elected free agency on November 3.
November 14, 2012: Signed as a minor league free agent by the Los Angeles Angels.
March 30, 2013: Called up by the Los Angeles Angels.
September 2, 2014: Designated for assignment by the Los Angeles Angels.
September 5, 2014: Claimed off waivers from the Los Angeles Angels by the Cleveland Indians.
November 3, 2014: Claimed off waivers from the Cleveland Indians by the Chicago White Sox.
November 2, 2016: Outrighted to AAA by the Chicago White Sox.
November 7, 2016: Became a free agent.
December 17, 2016: Signed as a minor league free agent by the Minnesota Twins.
November 6, 2017: Became a free agent.
November 24, 2017: Signed as a minor league free agent by the Miami Marlins.
April 13, 2018: Called up by the Miami Marlins.
July 5, 2018: Designated for assignment by the Miami Marlins; outrighted to AAA on July 7.
October 2, 2018: Became a free agent.
January 30, 2019: Signed as a minor league free agent by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
March 28, 2019: Called up by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
May 4, 2019: Designated for assignment by the Pittsburgh Pirates; outrighted to AAA on May 8.