FanSided Off-Season Simulation: Pittsburgh Pirates Trade for Cameron Rupp

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - AUGUST 19: Cameron Rupp /

As we begin our off-season simulation here at FanSided, the Pittsburgh Pirates have swung a trade with the Philadelphia Phillies.

As you can read about here, this week here at the FanSided MLB Division we will be running an off-season simulation with writers from each site functioning as that team’s general manager. Here at Rum Bunter, we have come to a trade agreement with the Philadelphia Phillies to address the Pittsburgh Pirates’ need for a backup catcher.

The Pittsburgh Pirates have traded left-handed pitcher Steven Brault to the Philadelphia Phillies in exchange for catcher Cameron Rupp.

This is a move where the Pirates are addressing their lacking catching depth. Behind oft-injured starting catcher Francisco Cervelli, the catching situation is a mess for the Pirates. Elias Diaz is slated to be Cervelli’s backup with Jacob Stallings set to start at Triple-A.

Last season, however, Diaz was horrible in the Major Leagues. In 64 games last season Diaz owned a .265 on-base percentage, .314 slugging percentage, a .253 wOBA, 52 wRC+, and a fWAR of -0.3. To be frank, this is not good enough for a Major League catcher.

As for Cameron Rupp, he owned a .299 on-base percentage, a .417 slugging percentage, .304 wOBA, 84 wRC+, and a 0.8 fWAR in 88 games last season. Rupp is a huge improvement over Diaz, and adding him also allows the Pirates to send Diaz to Triple-A giving them better catching depth than just Jacob Stallings.

As for Steven Brault, he is a man without a rotation spot in Pittsburgh. After being named the International League Pitcher of the Year last season, he pitched in 11 games (4 starts) for the Pittsburgh Pirates last season. Brault averaged 5.97 K/9, 3.43 BB/9, 0.78 HR/9, and he posted a 4.34 ERA and a 5.58 xFIP.

Next: Free agent target: Jaime Garcia

Moving forward, we viewed Steven Brault as a man without a rotation spot in Pittsburgh. Due to this, it made sense to us to move Brault to address the team’s need for catching help.