Pittsburgh Pirates: Ben Gamel is now a Potential Trade Chip

(Photo by Will Newton/Getty Images)
(Photo by Will Newton/Getty Images) /

The Pittsburgh Pirates are expected to be very active on the trade market over the next few weeks.

This July has a chance to go down as one of the most prominent months in recent Pittsburgh Pirates history.  Not only did the team maximize their 2021 Draft, but they also are expected to add many more quality prospects in the coming weeks.  The 2021 MLB Trade Deadline is on July 30th, a day earlier than usual.

Since the beginning of the year, it has been expected that players like Adam Frazier and Richard Rodriguez would be used as trade bait.  However, the team has also found some other tradable assets along the way.  Starting pitcher Tyler Anderson has produced a nice season which should give him a market.

The Pittsburgh Pirates picked up outfielder Ben Gamel when he was placed on waivers by the Cleveland Indians earlier this season.  At the time it was a simple move, the team needed outfielders and Gamel was available.  With the ability to play all three outfield positions and even some first base, Gamel had a chance to find spot on this team.

He has done that, and has been in the lineup basically everyday for the last three weeks. He has really taken advantage of this playing time.  His overall batting line sits just at .246/.327/.429.  However, over the last 28 days he is batting a much more impactful .276/.368/.526 with five home runs and five doubles.

The Pittsburgh Pirates should take advantage of Ben Gamel’s hot streak right now and sell high.  Ben Gamel is what he is, he is a fourth outfielder and a decent bench piece.  He has brought a lot of positives to the Pittsburgh Pirates, but the biggest positive would be to get something for him.  Ben Cherington acquired him hoping that he would be able to fill in and if things went right, be a productive player like he showed in the past.

Right now, the 29 year old is exceeding expectations.  With only one year of contractual control left, he is not a longterm solution to this team’s future.  Also, if not now, then when? Gamel is in the middle of hitting the best he has in his career.  If the team hangs on to him past the deadline they run the risk of him regressing and losing any potential value.

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Ben Gamel was not in this team’s plans this year, but he wound up here in Pittsburgh.  The team should move him and get what they can for him, or even package him with an arm to maximize value. Regardless, to be in a situation to be able to trade him couldn’t have worked out better for this Front Office.