Pittsburgh Pirates Trade Target: OF Melky Cabrera
For a variety of reasons, the Pittsburgh Pirates will look to add an outfielder before Monday’s non-waiver trade deadline
Currently, the Pittsburgh Pirates are just 3.5 games out of first place in the National League Central. However, they are also currently without right fielder Gregory Polanco. This is because Polanco is on the 10-day disabled list with a hamstring injury that Neal Huntington has described as being “week-to-week.”
Also, if the Pittsburgh Pirates reach the postseason they will be without left fielder Starling Marte. This is because Marte would be ineligible for the postseason due to his 80 game PED suspension that he served earlier this season.
On Sunday, Pirate general manager Neal Huntington told reporters that the Pirates will search the trade market for an outfielder. This could serve the dual purpose of helping right field until Polanco returns, and to help in left field in any postseason games the Pirates play in.
An outfielder that is available that could help the Pirates is Melky Cabrera. The White Sox outfielder is set to become a free agent at the end of the season, and the White Sox are in full fledged sell mode having already made multiple trades. This makes Melky Cabrera a trade target for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
In 411 plate appearances this season Melky Cabrera owns a .335 on-base percentage, a .330 wOBA, 105 wRC+, and an ISO of .145. He has struck out at just a 12.7 percent rate and has hit 13 home runs. Cabrera can also play both left and right field.
Melky Cabrera owns a 31.7 percent hard contact rate this season which is higher than the Major League average. His average exit velocity of 88.91 miles per hour is also above the Major League average. His ability to hit the ball hard is a big reason why Cabrera has had the success he has this season.
In addition to what he brings on the field, Melky Cabrera brings a veteran presence and postseason experience to the Pirate clubhouse. These are the kind of intangibles that a team in a pennant race can never have enough of.
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Neal Huntington has said that the Pirates will pursue an outfielder on the trade market between now and Monday. An outfielder they should be pursuing is Melky Cabrera of the Chicago White Sox. The veteran switch-hitter would bring a lot of value to the Pirates.