Could the Pittsburgh Pirates have found their new super utility man in the form of a 25-year-old September call-up?
In Major League Baseball the month of September can be all about opportunity. With expanded rosters, September call-ups, and teams looking to get younger players reps opportunities are always presenting themselves.
As we discussed on the site yesterday, one Pittsburgh Pirates player that currently has opportunity knocking is outfielder Jordan Luplow. However, there is another young Pirate that can use their September call-up to take advantage of an opportunity. That player is super utility man Pablo Reyes.
The 25-year-old Reyes made his MLB debut earlier this month as a September call-up. His call-up was one that was well deserved. Quietly, Reyes had been putting together strong numbers throughout his minor league career for the Pirates.
In 2,384 career MiLB plate appearances Reyes slashed .277/.352/.411. At Triple-A this season he was slashing .289/.341/.435 to go with a .344 wOBA and a 118 wRC+. Most impressively, this came in his first taste of the Triple-A level.
Reyes brings something to the table that Clint Hurdle and the Pittsburgh Pirates love – positional flexibility. The right-handed hitter can play third base, second base, and the outfield. With Adam Frazier settling in as the team’s new starting second baseman it creates the need for a new super utility man on the Pirate roster, and this is a role Reyes may be ready to fill.
Regardless of his defense, ultimately, Reyes’ ability to take over as the team’s super utility man will come down to his offense. Well, that is a test he has passed thus far at the MLB level.
He has backed up his strong offensive season in the minor leagues by getting off to a red hot start at the MLB level. Through his first 21 MLB plate appearances Reyes owns a .444/.524/.667 slash line and he has already gotten his first career home run out of the way.
While it can be difficult to lock down a MLB role as a September call-up, a strong showing can put a down payment on said role. That is exactly what Pablo Reyes has done thus far this September. If he can continue to play well during the team’s final 13 games, he should enter Spring Training with an opportunity to be the team’s primary utility man in 2019.