Pittsburgh Pirates: Nik Turley Off the 40 Man Roster

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The Pittsburgh Pirates will not be able to get their offseason really going until after the World Series.  However, they did make a roster move yesterday.

The World Series is a few weeks away yet.  The teams have just started their Division Series, meaning there is still the Championship Series and then the World Series.  So for Pittsburgh Pirates fans, and for most Major League Baseball fans in general, the offseason is about a month away from truly starting.

With that being said, teams can start to make some roster moves, at least in preparation for the actual offseason.  The Pittsburgh Pirates have already started the process in doing so.  Last night, the team apparently outrighted left-handed reliever Nik Turdi off the 40 man roster.  Now this means that a player in the minor leagues is taken off the 40 man roster so that he can become a minor league free agent.

Turley likely moved through waivers and went unclaimed. This move allows Turley to possibly find a team that may have a spot for him at the big league level if he chooses to become a minor league free agent. Meanwhile, it opens up a 40 man roster spot for the Pittsburgh Pirates. It is still possible that if Turley does elect to become a minor league free agent that he could sign back with the Pittsburgh Pirates. The report of this roster move comes from John Dreker of Pirates Prospects. 

Turley was picked up by the Pittsburgh Pirates back in November of 2017.  He was picked up off waivers from the Minnesota Twins.  The 6’4” lefty reliever was quite good in the minors in 2017, throwing to a 2.05 ERA in 92 innings between the Twin’s Double-A and Triple-A affiliates. Furthermore, he did make his big league debut in 2017. He only threw 17.2 innings and got beat up for 22 earned runs to give him an earned run average over 11.00.  So obviously, it was not a good start in the big leagues, but it was in a small sample size.

The Pittsburgh Pirates hoped to have Turley compete for a left-handed relief spot during Spring Training with the case scenario being assigning him to the minors as a depth bullpen piece.  However, he was quickly suspended in January of 2018 for failing a performance-enhancing drug test.  He was hit with an 80 game suspension for the start of the season.  After his suspension, he started to feel tenderness in his left elbow so he was put on the 60-day disabled list.

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Although Turley never got to pitch a single inning for the Pittsburgh Pirates organization, Turley sure made a lot of headlines.  It seems likely that the 29-year-old will elect free agency, so his stay in Pittsburgh could be over.

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