The Pittsburgh Pirates have taken what they need from the Triple-A Indianapolis roster to start the September call-ups. The Bucs will add several players to the roster including right hander Chris Leroux, who pitched so well last year with the Pirates as a reliever (24 strikeouts in 25 innings/ERA+ of 131/ERA 2.88.) The lanky Leroux hasn’t pitched for the Pirates this season because he strained his right pec muscle.
When he was scheduled to return from the 60-day DL, he got outrighted to Triple-A. We really thought it was a poor decision by the Pirates, but he cleared. Leroux then made a request that many Pirates fans had been clarmoring to see. The right hander requested to be a starter again.
Leroux had a pretty good idea. Leroux has a 3.00 ERA in seven starts, he has appeared in 14 other games for Triple-A Indy. The Marlins 7th round pick back in 2005, put up some o.k. strikeout numbers as he had 56 in 63.2 total innings pitched to go with a solid WHIP of 1.037.
Anyway, the Black Belt Ninja pitched against the Brewers last night after Karstens was hurt and gave up a run on a passed ball.
Lefty Jeff Locke will be coming back to the Pirates. The Pirates might use any of the McPherson, Locke, or Leroux combo to make a spot start next week. One would think it would be Locke who could take advantage of PNC Park the most. The spot start might come against Houston who has been one of the worst teams in Major League Baseball.
Another left hander will join the team in Milwaukee, as Justin Wilson will be coming back up to the big club. Wilson has serious heat, and now that he is pitching out of the bullpen, those numbers might really pop. Wilson pitched in San Diego and showed more control as he pitched from the stretch and his fastball sat in the low nineties.
Two weeks ago Neal Huntington didn’t sound real confident about the idea of bringing Brock Holt to the big leagues. The Pirates ninth round pick out of Rice University in 2009, just kept on hitting. The 5’10″ Holt is a middle infielder with speed, yeh just like Chase d’Arnaud and Jordy Mercer, but unlike those guys, Holt has raked since arriving at Triple-A. It’s hard to ignore what he has done as a top of the order type bat. He just kept hitting and now has a triple slash of .432/.476/.537 in his first 95 at-bats for Indy.
The third catcher for the Pirates will be Eric Fryer, who actually caught very little at Triple-A Indianapolis this season. After watching the Bucs trying to throw out runners this season, Fryer’s cannon might be valuable late in games. Neal Huntington said that Tony Sanchez wouldn’t be called up, he has started hitting better since. Sanchez is batting .314 in his past ten games with a homer and three doubles.