The Pittsburgh Pirates received some positive news about one of their potential outfield options for the 2020 season. Apparently, Jason Martin is expected to be ready to go at the start of spring.
The Pittsburgh Pirates, and really the sports teams in Pittsburgh in general, faced a very injury-plagued 2019. The Bucs lost a lot of key members to their team throughout the 2019 season including Jameson Taillon, Starling Marte, Gregory Polanco, and Keone Kela. While those four were the major names to miss significant time in 2019, there was also a young outfielder who suffered a major injury at the big league level.
The Pittsburgh Pirates called up Jason Martin for an extended look in September. He received a cup of coffee earlier in the year and put together a solid handful of games. When September rolled around the team was going to get a chance to see if Martin would be worthy of a roster spot for the 2020 season. Instead, Martin got injured relatively quickly, tearing his labrum while hustling and sliding into home plate. The opposing team’s catcher fell on Martin while trying to field a throw.
After the injury, it was projected that Martin would not be ready for full baseball activities until April, hence pushing him back even further by missing the majority of spring training. However, not long before the end of last year, it was reported that Martin’s shoulder was responding well and actually might be ahead of schedule.
It seems that the optimistic report is indeed true. The expectation is that outfielder Jason Martin will be ready for a full spring training with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Martin’s physical therapist tweeted that Martin’s shoulder is fully recovered and is ready to compete this spring. Stan Conte, Martin’s therapist, tweeted:
This is obviously good news for both Jason Martin and the Pittsburgh Pirates. The 24-year-old showed some potential last year and has throughout his minor league career. He was the “last part” of the Gerrit Cole trade and it is important to see if the team has something in the outfielder.
With the Pittsburgh Pirates trading Starling Marte, there should be a good opportunity for him to prove he belongs on the roster. Martin is a left-handed batter so he should have a good chance to make the team out of spring training and help set up a platoon.
The team does not have an obvious starter for their last outfield spot. Right now the team has Gregory Polanco in right and Bryan Reynolds in either left or center, so the team could platoon right-handed hitter Guillermo Heredia and the left-handed-hitting Martin. Now there have been some rumors of the team adding another outfielder, but if they are not able to, then this platoon would make a lot of sense.