Pittsburgh Pirates Trade for Joaquin Benoit

PHILADELPHIA, PA - JULY 26: Joaquin Benoit
PHILADELPHIA, PA - JULY 26: Joaquin Benoit /

The Pittsburgh Pirates added to their bullpen before Monday’s 4 PM non-waiver trade deadline

Joaquin Benoit is now a Pittsburgh Pirates. The Pirates traded for the 40-year old right-handed reliever from the Philadelphia Phillies on Monday afternoon. In return, the Pirates have sent the Phillies Low-A relief pitcher Seth McGarry.

Joaquin Benoit is still owed around 2.6 million dollars this season. In addition to acquiring Benoit, the Pirates also received cash considerations from the Phillies to help pay the rest of Benoit’s contract.

This is a very perplexing trade for the Pirates. Benoit has not been very good for the Phillies this season, and is slated to become a free agent at the end of the season. Benoit will replace Tony Watson in the bullpen after the Bucs traded him to the Dodgers earlier in the day.

In 44 appearances this season, Joaquin Benoit had pitched 42 innings out of the Phillie bullpen. He allowed 32 hits, 5 home runs (1.07 HR/9), and was averaging 9.21 K/9. Control, however, has been an issue as he has averaged 3.43 BB/9 this season.

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Benoit owns a 4.07 ERA this season. His 3.79 FIP, however, indicates that he has pitched better than his ERA makes it seem.

This season Joaquin Benoit has benefitted from a .252 BABIP. This indicates that he has benefitted from strong defense and/or good luck. Additionally, his 4.66 xFIP indicates that his numbers are expected to regress over the course of the rest of the season. Benoit’s 29.1 percent hard contact rate this season is also far too high.

As was said above, this is very perplexing trade. Joaquin Benoit is not controlled past this season, and the Pirates should have been targeting players that are controlled past this season.

Furthermore, Benoit is a very mediocre reliever. It is debatable how much, if at all, he improves the Pirate bullpen. The Bucs would have been better off seeing what young arms such as Steven Brault or Edgar Santana can do out of the Pirate bullpen with an extended look. Especially since Brault and/or Santana could be big parts of the 2018 Pirate bullpen.