Friday evening the Pittsburgh Pirates made two roster moves, including a surprising one, leaving them with 38 players remaining in major league camp
The Pittsburgh Pirates now have just 38 players remaining in major league camp. This comes after optioning outfielder Travis Swaggerty and utility man Tucupita Marcano to Triple-A on Friday evening. The team will have until Thursday's season opener in Cincinnati against the Reds to widdle that 38 numbers down to 26.
Swaggerty being optioned comes as a bit of a surprise. The former first-round pick had put together a very strong spring. There is no way around it, he was one of the Pirates' best players in Grapefruit League play.
The left-handed hitting outfielder consistently put together strong at-bats and hits one line drive after another. In 34 plate appearances this spring, Swaggerty hit for a .379/.471/.690 slash line. He was tied for the team lead in home runs with 3, drew 5 walks, and struck out 7 times. It appeared that Swaggerty had done enough to hit his way onto the team's Opening Day roster.
At this point it is fair to wonder if this front office sees any future for Swaggerty with the Pirates. He is 25-years-old, has little to gain from more time spent in the minors, and had done all he could and then some this spring to earn an Opening Day roster spot.
As for Marcano, his option comes as no surprise. The utility man hit just .148/.281/.185 in 32 Grapefruit League PAs. He drove in 3 runs, stole a pair of bags, hit a double, and posted a 5:7 BB:K ratio.
Marcano is just 23-years-old and will not turn 24 until September. This gives reason to believe there could still be plenty of growth in Marcano as a player and a hitter. With the Pirates last season he hit for a .206/.256/.306 slash line to go with a 57 wRC+ and a 58 OPS+ in 177 PAs.