The Pittsburgh Pirates made a bullpen move on Thursday afternoon
The bullpen now looks a bit different for the Pittsburgh Pirates. This is due to a roster move the Pirates made on Thursday afternoon. They have swapped one right-handed reliever for another.
On Thursday afternoon, the Pirates optioned right-handed relief pitcher Johnny Barbato to Triple-A Indianapolis. In a corresponding move, the team recalled right-handed reliever Dovydas Neverauskas. Neverauskas made his Major League debut earlier this season.
The Pittsburgh Pirates claimed Johnny Barbato off waivers from the New York Yankees in April. Shortly after this, he would join the Pirate bullpen. Unfortunately for Barbato and the Pirates, he would struggle mightily during his time in Pittsburgh.
Johnny Barbato pitched 22 1/3 innings for the Pirates this season. In these 22 1/3 innings pitched he allowed 22 hits, he walked 13 batters (5.24 BB/9), and 4 home runs (1.61 HR/9). He owned a 4.84 ERA, 5.88 FIP, 5.75 xFIP, and a -0.3 fWAR.
As for Neverauskas, he has been having a stellar season for the Indianapolis Indians at the Triple-A level. In 27 2/3 innings pitched at Triple-A this season Dovydas Neveraukas was averaging 8.13 K/9, 3.25 BB/9, and 0.33 HR/9. He owned a 3.58 ERA and a FIP of 3.10.
The 24-year old Lithuanian native has one Major Leauge outing this season. That outing came against the Chicago Cubs back on April 24th. In this outing he allowed 1 run on 2 hits, no walks, and a strikeout in 2 innings of work. This is also the lone Major League outing of his career thus far.
Personally, I would have liked to have seen the Pirates promote Edgar Santana to replace Johnny Barbato. The Important thing, however, is that Barbato is gone. Neverauskas is an intriguing young arm with high upside as a reliever. Hopefully, Pirate fans will start to get to see that potential the rest of this season.