Pittsburgh Pirates: Potential Minor League Free Agents to Consider

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The last player we'll look at today is Luke Weaver. Weaver was once a top prospect for the St. Louis Cardinals, but injuries and inconsistency have not been his strong suit. He was included in the trade that sent Paul Goldschmidt to the Cards but was traded to the Kansas City Royals this past season. At the end of the season, the Royals non-tendered the right-hander.

Now Weaver had an atrocious 6.56 ERA. But that's where the negatives end. Weaver had a K:BB ratio of 2.92 and only allowed a single home run in 35.2 innings of work. He had a 3.82 xFIP, 3.64 SIERA, and 3.84 DRA. Weaver was snake-bitten by unbelievably bad batted ball luck. Opponents had a .429 batting average on balls in play against him. 

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I'd go so far as to say that Weaver has a better chance of having a better season than Vince Velasquez, based solely on last year's numbers. While Vince had nearly 40 innings on Weaver, they both had a similar strikeout rate and walk rate; Weaver allowed home runs five times less often than Velaquez, despite both having the same exit velocity. The difference was Velasquez had a .269 batting average on balls in play while Weaver's BAbip far exceeded .400, meaning that there's a good chance the latter will have positive regression next season.