The Pittsburgh Pirates Should Promote Outfielder Jason Martin

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

It’s time for outfielder Jason Martin to return to the Major League level for the Pittsburgh Pirates

With the team currently mired in the worst second half in Major League history, by winning percentage that is, the Pittsburgh Pirates should be playing for 2020 and beyond. Part of this is playing players that could be part of the team’s future.

One such player is outfielder Jason Martin. However, Martin is not currently on the MLB roster but this needs to change. The team should promote Martin from Triple-A Indianapolis.

The 23-year-old Martin is a left-handed hitter who came to the Pirates as part of the Gerrit Cole trade. Martin made his MLB debut earlier this season. In 39 plate appearances with the Pirates this season Martin slashed .250/.308/.306 with a wRC+ of 66. While he struggled in his first taste of MLB action, he should get another opportunity.

Overall this season Martin’s numbers at Triple-A are not the best. He is slashing just .270/.314/.436 with a wRC+ of 86. However, in recent weeks Martin has been hot at the plate. This should lead to him earning another opportunity with the big club.

In his last 15 games played for the Indianapolis Indians Martin is slashing .356/.397/.458 in 59 plate appearances. During this stretch he owns a 123 wRC+ and he has collected six doubles.

Martin has the makeup of a strong fourth outfielder. While he lacks the power of an every day player, he brings speed to the table and can play all three outfield positions. It’s time for the Pirates to test Martin at the MLB level.

Even though Martin has struggled with the Pirates this season, there is reason to believe he would improve. With the Pirates this season he owns a 34.6% hard contact rate and his average exit velocity is 91.0 MPH. Both of these are above league average. If you hit the ball hard, which Martin has done with the Pirates this season, the hits will come.

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Martin may never be an every day player at the MLB level, but he has all the tools needed to be a quality fourth outfielder. In the final seven weeks of this lost season the Pirates should have Martin on the MLB roster to see what his future holds. If he can prove to be a quality MLB fourth outfielder, then that is one less hole the team will need to fill this offseason.