JARROD DYSON, CENTER FIELDER
|Born: August 15, 1984
Drafted: 50th Round, 1475th Overall, 2006 (Royals)
How Acquired: Free agent
College: Southwest Mississippi CC
WTM’s PIRATE PLAYER PROFILES
|Dyson has had a remarkably long career for a 50th round draft pick. He’s done it entirely with speed, as he’s never been even a league-average hitter. He was one of the game’s fastest players for much of his career and, at age 35, Statcast still records him with very good sprint speed. Dyson has been an above-average to outstanding defender throughout his career, with a good arm. As a base stealer he’s been prolific, usually with high success percentages. But he has almost no power. He makes contact at a solid rate, but not good enough contact to hit for a good average. His walk rates have been about as good as you’ll see from a hitter with no power. LHPs have had little trouble with him over his career, holding him to a .586 OPS, although he has only a .671 mark against RHPs. The Pirates signed him to a one-year deal for 2020.
Dyson played mostly left field in rookie ball. He did a solid job of getting on base and showed his speed quite a bit.
The Royals moved Dyson up to low A, but he evidently was hurt as he played in only ten games.
Dyson played in high A, spending well over half his time in left and splitting the rest between right and center. He stole a lot of bases, but got on base at only a decent rate and hit for no power at all.
Dyson missed the first two months when he was suspended for 50 games for amphetamine use. He eventually went to AA, where he played mostly center for the first time. He stole bases at a prodigious rate, but again did only a fair job of getting on base and hit for no power. Kansas City added him to the 40-man roster after the season.
After missing the first half of the season with a muscle tear and ankle sprain, Dyson made his way to AAA. He hit pretty much as always, but he did hit his first professional home run. The Royals called him up in September and used him a lot in center field. After the season, Baseball America rated him 20th in the Royals’ system, his only appearance on one of their prospect lists.
Dyson opened the season with the Royals, but they sent him to AAA in mid-May and he spent most of the rest of the season there. In the minors, his walk rate and power improved a little. He stole bases at both levels with outstanding efficiency.
The Royals sent Dyson to AAA at the start of the season, but he ended up spending most of it in Kansas City. He was the team’s most frequent center fielder, but by the end of the season he was often coming into games as a defensive substitute, so he only got about a half a season’s worth of plate appearances. His plate discipline continued to improve, but he still didn’t contribute much on offense except on the bases.
Dyson spent the season in the majors, except for a AAA rehab after he missed several weeks with an ankle sprain. He hit about the same for the Royals, with slightly more power and continued stolen base skills.
Dyson spent the whole season in the majors, although he started less than half the time. He often pinch ran or served as a defensive substitute.
Dyson showed a little more power than usual, but didn’t get on base as much and got less playing time.
Dyson played all year for the Royals, apart from a brief absence due to an oblique strain. He had his best season at the plate, with a career-high 96 OPS+. After the season, Kansas City traded him to Seattle.
Dyson stayed with the Mariners all year, except he missed most of the last six weeks with a groin injury and hernia. His hitting slipped back to previous levels. He became a free agent after the season and signed a two-year deal with Arizona.
Dyson had a rough year with the Diamondbacks. His hitting fell off a cliff, and then he missed the last three months with a strained groin.
Dyson reached a career high in at-bats with Arizona as a fourth outfielder. He started 61 games in center and 30 in the corners, and frequently appeared as a defensive sub. His hitting rebounded a little, but not fully; his OPS+ was still a dismal 66, still well below his very low career number of 78. He remained an outstanding base stealer.
Dyson’s attraction for the Pirates, obviously, was the same as all the rest of their acquisitions during Ben Cherington’s first off-season as GM: He was the cheapest player available. He’ll help their defense, but will be a significant liability on offense. Dyson figures to open the season as the starter in center, possibly platooning with Guillermo Heredia. With any luck Jason Martin or Jared Oliva will ultimately take the job away.
|Signing Bonus: $5,000
MiLB Debut: 2006
MLB Debut: 9/7/2010
MiLB FA Eligible: N/A
MLB FA Eligible: 2020
Rule 5 Eligible: N/A
Added to 40-Man: November 20, 2009
Options Remaining: 0 (USED: 2010, 2011, 2012)
MLB Service Time: 8.088
|June 7, 2006: Drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the 50th round, 1475th overall pick; signed on June 9.
November 20, 2009: Contract purchased by the Kansas City Royals.
January 6, 2017: Traded by the Kansas City Royals to the Seattle Mariners for Nate Karns.
November 2, 2017: Became a free agent.
February 19, 2018: Signed as a free agent by the Arizona Diamondbacks.
October 31, 2019: Became a free agent.
February 12, 2020: Signed as a free agent by the Pittsburgh Pirates.