Pittsburgh Pirates Acquire Outfielder Billy McKinney From New York Yankees

The Pittsburgh Pirates picked up an experienced depth piece on Thursday night from the New York Yankees.
Boston Red Sox v New York Yankees
Boston Red Sox v New York Yankees / New York Yankees/GettyImages

Thursday evening the Pittsburgh Pirates swung a trade with the New York Yankees to add outfield help in the form of Billy McKinney

The Pittsburgh Pirates on Thursday evening acquired outfielder Billy McKinney from the New York Yankees in exchange for international bonus pool money according to MLB.com's Mark Feinsand. The move comes just a week after McKinney signed a minor league deal with the Yankees.

McKinney is set to enter his age 29 season and it would be his seventh season in the Major Leagues if he does play for the Pirates this season. During his six-year career thus far, the former first-round pick of the Oakland Athletics has played for the Yankees, Toronto Blue Jays, Milwaukee Brewers, New York Mets, Los Angeles Dodgers, and the Oakland Athletics. He most recently played for the Yankees in his second stint last season.

Last season, McKinney played 48 games for the Yankees hitting .227/.320/.406 across 128 at-bats. He had six home runs and 10 total extra-base hits. He also walked 17 times while striking out 39.

For his career, McKinney has never been much of a hitter with a career slash of .209/.284/.390 across 311 games and 818 at-bats. He is also generally a below-average fielder with a negative career defensive WAR of -1.1 while finishing with a -1 outs above average and a -2 arm value last season according to Baseball Savant.

While McKinney is being traded to the Pirates on a minor-league contract, he will likely receive an opportunity to make the opening-day roster in spring training this upcoming season. The Pirates will see Jack Suwinski and Bryan Reynolds reprise their starting roles in center field and left field but will still have a question mark in right field as it is unclear if the Pirates will move Henry Davis back to the catcher position full-time with Endy Rodriguez out for the entirety of the 2024 season.

If Davis is moved back to catcher full-time in 2024, the Pirates would need to find a new platoon situation in right field. McKinney will likely compete to be part of that platoon. Even if McKinney wouldn't make the roster out of camp, the Texas native would provide the Pirates with an experienced outfielder that could provide depth as the season progresses.

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