Pirates trade Hinske to Yankees; Garrett Jones to be promoted
The Pirates have dealt infielder/outfielder Eric Hinske to the Yankees for Minor League outfielder/catcher Eric Fryer and right-hander Casey Erickson. Both are at the Single-A level.
Outfielder/first baseman Garrett Jones will take Hinske’s spot on the 25-man roster and will be in Pittsburgh for Tuesday’s game.
The Yankees also receive cash considerations from the Pirates in addition to Hinske.
Hinske, who was making $1.5 million this season, signed as a free agent with the Pirates this offseason and provided depth at the corner infield and right field positions. Though he made only 23 starts, Hinske was a primary piece off the bench, though he didn’t provide as much power as had been expected. Overall, he hit .255 with one homer and 11 RBIs in 106 at-bats.
Jones has been deserving of a promotion for what he’s done in Indianapolis so far this season, and over the last few days, Pirates general manager Neal Huntington had suggested that he could very well be the next player promoted.
Jones, 28, appeared in 31 games with the Twins back in 2007, but has not been back to the Majors since. After signing with the Pirates as a Minor League free agent and impressing management during Spring Training, Jones went on to hit .307 with 18 doubles, 12 homers and 48 RBIs in 72 games with Triple-A Indianapolis this year. He also had 14 stolen bases.
Jones would be an option at first base or in the outfield, very similar to the role that Steve Pearce has currently, but as a left-handed hitting option.
As for the players the Pirates received in return…
Erickson, 23, was 3-3 with a 2.25 ERA in 21 games (three starts) at the low Single-A level this season. He had 37 strikeouts and 13 walks in 44 innings. Erickson, a 10th-round Draft pick in 2006, has been assigned to low Single-A West Virginia.
Fryer, 23, has been playing with the Yankees’ high Single-A Tampa affiliate, where he made 55 appearances in left, five behind the plate and one in right this season. In 59 games, he’s hit .250 with 11 doubles, two home runs, 24 RBIs and 34 runs scored. Fryer was a 10th-round Draft selection by Milwaukee in 2007. He has been assigned to high Single-A Lynchburg.