Nunez added, Lorin lost in Rule 5 Draft
Using the eighth pick of the Rule 5 Draft, the Pirates added shortstop Gustavo Nunez to the mix of players the club will look at as potential backup infielders for the 2012 team.
Nunez was available after being left off the Tigers’ 40-man roster last month. He began the 2011 season in high-A, where he batted .304 with 20 extra-base hits and 14 stolen bases in 62 games. He played another 34 games in Double-A before his season ended prematurely with an ankle fracture. Nunez underwent surgery in September and continues to rehab his ankle this offseason.
“He’s the classic defensive profile for a young shortstop – the ability to field, the ability to throw, the ability to run,” Pirates general manager Neal Huntington said. “Assuming health, assuming that he comes in and shows us enough bat when he comes into Spring Training, he is a weapon when he comes off the bench.”
For Nunez, 23, to stick in the organization, he would have to remain on the Pirates’ 25-man roster for a full season. Otherwise, the Pirates are required to offer him back to the Tigers, who can choose to reclaim their player for half of the $50,000 the Pirates paid to select him on Thursday.
The Pirates’ only loss in the Major League portion of the Rule 5 Draft was Brett Lorin, a 24-year-old right-hander who posted a 2.84 ERA in 25 games (17 starts) with high-A Bradenton in 2011. Lorin was taken by Arizona.
The Pirates made three selections in the Minor League portion of the Draft, taking left-hander Aaron Poreda and catchers Charles Cutler and Francisco Diaz. Poreda, 25, was a first-round Draft pick in 2007 and was one of the key players the Padres received when they traded Jake Peavy in ’09.
With the addition of Nunez, the Pirates’ 40-man roster is once again full.
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