The Pittsburgh Pirates are putting their final touches on their 2023 Opening Day roster. Today, they made some moves to help clear up the eventual 26-man roster.
One of the lingering questions over the last few months of the offseason was who would be the Pittsburgh Pirates backup catcher. Everyone knew that the Organization would not be aggressive and push top prospects like Endy Rodriguez and Henry Davis to the Majors. Which meant that Austin Hedges would be the starter for the team.
With that being said, Rodriguez and Hedges are/were the only two catchers on the 40-man roster. So who would be the backup? Well, the position battle was between 3 options. Jason Delay and Tyler Heineman both were on the rosters are one point last year. Veteran Kevin Plawecki was the other option brought in through the free-agent market. He was brought in on a Non-Roster Invite to Spring Training.
Jason Delay has made the Pittsburgh Pirates roster. This kind of makes sense as he probably has the most potential out of the three of them. Speaking of the others, where does that leave them? Well, the Organization announced a series of moves today:
A bit of a surprise from this announcement is the Yerry De Los Santos announcement. It seemed like there was a good chance the young righty would end up in the Opening Day bullpen. That is not happening, obviously. De Los Santos struggled with a muscle issue in his throwing shoulder. Hopefully, starting him at Triple-A is just to get him back into the swing of things, pitching in higher leverage situations and making sure everything is sound.
Now, this will not be the end of their time with the Pittsburgh Pirates. Heineman most likely will be recalled at some point as another catching option. Same with De Los Santos, he will likely be promoted as soon as a spot is available in the bullpen.