Wade LeBlanc Has Been An Unsung Hero In The Pirate Bullpen
Wade LeBlanc has been an unsung hero in the Pirate bullpen this season
When the 2017 season began the Pittsburgh Pirates were projected to have a strong bullpen. A big reason for this was the big four at the back of their bullpen in Daniel Hudson, Felipe Rivero, Juan Nicasio, and Tony Watson. And outside of a bad three outing stretch for Hudson, these four have not disappointed this season.
However, there is one pitcher that has been a pleasant surprise in the Pirate bullpen. This pitcher is Wade LeBlanc. So far in 2017, he has been an unsung hero in the Pirate bullpen.
Entering the season LeBlanc figured to be the long man for Clint Hurdle and the Pirates. However, he has proven he can play a much larger role than just being the long man. Through his great work as a member of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Wade LeBlanc has earned Hurdle’s trust and a larger role in the bullpen.
LeBlanc has pitched 19 1/3 innings this season. He has allowed just 15 hits, only 1 home run, and he’s walked just 3 batters. He is averaging 6.52 K/9, his FIP is 2.72, and his xFIP is 3.42.
This builds upon the great work that Wade LeBlanc did for the Pirates last September after being claimed off waivers from the Seattle Mariners. Last September included, LeBlanc now owns a 1.72 ERA, 2.44 FIP, 3.51 xFIP, he’s walked just 5 batters, and has allowed just a single home run in 31 1/3 innings pitched as a Pirate.
The great work Wade LeBlanc did last September led to the Pirates rewarding him with a new 2-year contract this past offseason. At the time of the contract, a lot of people were scratching their heads. However, yet again, Neal Huntington and his scouts have come out smelling like roses when it comes to targeting and acquiring a pitcher.
Wade LeBlanc has played multiple roles for the Pirates this season. He has given the team multiple innings when needed, he has pitched as a lefty specialist, and he has pitched as a late inning reliever in close games. Having a reliever like this is an extremely valuable thing for a Major League bullpen to have.
Wade LeBlanc’s role in the Pirate bullpen keeps growing. This is an honor that he has earned with his great work as a member of the Pittsburgh Pirates. It has led to him becoming an unsung hero in the Pirate bullpen.