Results tagged ‘ Argenis Diaz ’

News and notes

Jenifer Langosch/

A few miscellaneous items:

  • The Pirates have signed Tyler Yates to a Minor League contract with an invitation to Spring Training. Yates last pitched in 2009.
  • It appears like the last pitch Chan Ho Park will throw in his accomplished Major League career will be in a Pirates uniform. Park has agreed to a one-year contract with Japan’s Orix Buffaloes. I haven’t heard Park officially say he’ll never return to the US to play again, but at the age of 37, it seems unlikely.
  • Infielder Argenis Diaz, who the Pirates non-tendered earlier in the month, has signed a Minor League deal with the Tigers. With other middle infielder options, the Pirates were not trying to bring Diaz back.

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Bucs re-sign two; non-tender four

Jenifer Langosch/

Tonight’s roster moves:

  • Ronny Cedeno agreed to a one-year contract with a club option for 2012
  • Jeff Karstens agreed to a one-year contract
  • Joel Hanrahan and Ross Ohlendorf were tendered contracts
  • Lastings Milledge, Argenis Diaz, Brian Burres and Donnie Veal were not tendered contracts; they become free agents

From GM Neal Huntington:

On Milledge: We spent a lot of time analyzing Lastings Milledge as compared with the potential alternatives for the expected role and determined it was worth further exploration of the alternatives.  We remain open to continuing dialogue with Lastings.”

On Veal: “Everything is on schedule with Donnie’s rehabilitation.  We made a tough business decision, but we are optimistic we will be able to re-sign Donnie.”

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Putting a bowtie on the Trade Deadline

Jenifer Langosch/

Wow. So much for the expectation of a slower-than-usual Deadline day. Granted, this Trade Deadline period hasn’t been anything like it was last year, but it got pretty busy in the last 24 hours.

In order to help you sift through all the coverage from today, here it is itemized with links to take you to what you want to read.

That should get you through today’s non-game content. Would love to hear your thoughts on the Pirates’ deals of the last 24 hours. I will tell you this — have heard from multiple reputable baseball folks (not within the Pirates organization) who lauded Huntington’s return for a group of players that were not going to be cornerstones of the organization.

Obviously, it’s going to take years to see how good or bad each trade turns out to be. But considering the Bucs did not give up any starting pitchers or starting position players, there’s a good chance the scales could ultimately tip in their favor. The bench and bullpen are the two easiest aspects of a club to rebuild in the winter, and that’s where all the subtractions came from.

Your thoughts?

Pirates, D-backs announce five-player deal

Jenifer Langosch/

With the Pirates’ Deadline deal now official.. here is the full story in advance of it going on shortly:

The Pirates have acquired catcher Chris Snyder and Minor League shortstop Pedro Ciriaco from the D-backs in exchange for three of the team’s veterans – Ryan Church, Bobby Crosby and D.J. Carrasco.

The deal was officially announced by Pittsburgh just three hours before Saturday’s 4 p.m. ET non-waiver Trade Deadline. The Pirates also received $3 million from the D-backs, according to a baseball source, to help compensate for part of Snyder’s salary.

Snyder won’t be the only player joining the Pirates in St. Louis before Saturday’s game. The club has also recalled shortstop Argenis Diaz and first baseman Jeff Clement. The pair will take the roster spots left vacant by Church and Crosby. Diaz can serve as a backup middle infielder, and Clement provides some insurance at first in case the Pirates need to plug Garrett Jones into an outfield spot.

The acquisition of Snyder gives the Pirates another option behind the plate, where Ryan Doumit – currently on the 15-day disabled list with a concussion – has been the everyday starter since 2008. Snyder has filled mostly a backup role for Arizona this season behind Miguel Montero, who took over the starting job when Snyder missed time in ’09 with a back injury.

In 65 games this year, Snyder is hitting .231 with 10 homers and 32 RBIs. He is a career .233 hitter in parts of seven seasons with Arizona. Snyder has never played anywhere else, having been drafted by the organization in the second round of the 2002 First-Round Player Draft.

“Chris Snyder is a solid Major League player who will provide us with a quality catching option for this year and next year,” general manager Neal Huntington said.  “He brings leadership to the club, along with a game calling and receiving ability that will help our pitching staff mature. Additionally he will add some home run power to our lineup.”

One of the biggest questions with the acquisition is how Snyder’s arrival might affect Doumit’s future in Pittsburgh.

Snyder is under contract for $5.75 million next year with a club option for 2012 worth $6.75 million. There is a $750,000 buyout attached to that option. That means that if the Pirates hold on to both Snyder and Doumit next year, Pittsburgh would be paying $10.85 million to its catching tandem in 2011.

There are some other options, though. The Pirates could deal either catcher before next season, or there is the possibility that Pittsburgh could consider using Doumit at another position. He has played some outfield and first base in the Majors.

In Ciriaco, the Pirates receive a 25-year-old shortstop who was hitting .259 with 28 extra-base hits and 51 RBIs in 87 games with the D-backs’ Triple-A affiliate. Ciriaco, has stolen 14 bases this year after swiping a combined 78 in his last two seasons.

Ciriaco’s skill set is fairly comparable to that of the team’s current starting shortstop, Ronny Cedeno. This is the first full Triple-A season for the Dominican Republic native, who is known primarily for his defense and speed.

The fact that Pittsburgh targeted a shortstop makes perfect sense given the organization’s lack of middle infield talent at the high Minor League levels.

The Pirates did not lose any critical pieces in the deal, as none of the three players acquired by Arizona was expected to be a long-term fit in Pittsburgh. All three had been signed as free agents during the winter

Both Crosby and Church had a chance to earn more playing time either this season, but neither seized the opportunity. Church hit just .182 with 18 RBIs in 69 games, while Crosby batted .224 in 61 games.

Church was under contract for $1.5 million this season and has one more year of arbitration eligibility remaining. Crosby, who was earning $1 million, was to be a free agent again at the end of the season.

Carrasco, who was hopeful of being dealt to a contending team, has been a key piece in the Pirates’ bullpen. Used often as a long reliever, the righty accumulated 55 2/3 innings and posted a 3.88 ERA. He is under contract for $950,000 this season – with another $300,000 possible in incentives – and the D-backs can now retain his rights through 2012.

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Bucs dealing Church, Crosby, Carrasco; Diaz, Clement called up

Jenifer Langosch/

UPDATE: 1:14 PM: Deal is official. Chris Snyder and Pedro Ciriaco to Pirates for D.J. Carrasco, Ryan Church and Bobby Crosby. Pirates also getting $3 million in cash to compensate for Snyder’s salary.

Pirates also officially announced recalls of Argenis Diaz, Jeff Clement and Daniel McCutchen. All three, as well as Snyder, will be in St. Louis for Saturday’s game. Ciriaco assigned to Triple-A.


UPDATE: 10:52 AM: The Pirates will also be getting a Minor League player in addition to Snyder. No name yet.


UPDATE: 10:39 AM: One source confirmed a report that the D-backs will be getting Ryan Church and Bobby Crosby in exchange for Snyder. Also, source says reliever D.J. Carrasco will be going to Arizona, too.


UPDATE: 10:32 AM: Garrett Jones is not involved in any deal, a source confirmed. Also, hearing that the two roster moves are related to the Snyder deal.


The Pirates apparently have something else cooking as today’s 4 p.m. ET Trade Deadline approaches. According to a source, infielder Argenis Diaz and first baseman Jeff Clement have been summoned from Triple-A Indianapolis, so obviously there are two position player spots about to open.

No word yet on who might be on the move, though you have to wonder if the Pirates have considered trading Garrett Jones with his value high. Again, that’s pure speculation on my part. Clement’s only position is first base, while Diaz can play the middle infield.

Keep in mind, too, that this could have to do with the Chris Snyder deal with Arizona. That is expected to be finalized later today. To this point, it’s not known who the Pirates have offered in return and it’s possible that the Pirates have called up Diaz and Clement to compensate for what they’re giving up.

The Pirates weren’t necessarily expected to be dealing position players, so the news that there look to be two on the way out comes as a bit of a surprise.

More details as they come…

Clement has hit .305 with 15 doubles, eight homers and 33 RBis in 40 games with Triple-A Indianapolis. He was sent down in June after an unsuccessful stint as the Pirates’ everyday first baseman.

Diaz, known much more for his glove than his offensive ability, is hitting .248 with 22 RBIs in 80 games with Indianapolis. He was with the Pirates briefly once earlier this season.

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April 21: Brewers (6-7) @ Pirates (7-6)

Jenifer Langosch/

The Pirates have a pretty banged up infield, which necessitated the call-up of infielder Argenis Diaz today.

Bobby Crosby tweaked his left shoulder making a diving play the other day and is out at least 2-3 days. The Pirates are hopeful it’s no longer, but Crosby was the only other shortstop the club had behind Ronny Cedeno.

Andy LaRoche had a setback on Tuesday when his back tightened up on him while he was doing some on-field activities. As a result, the Pirates are going to take a step back with him and be extra cautious. Though LaRoche told me he feels fine, I wouldn’t expect to see him play any earlier than Friday.

Other items of interest:

  • Brian Burres was sent back to Triple-A Indianapolis, where he will go back into the Triple-A rotation. We’ll never know if the Pirates’ Plan A was to have Burres start in Houston on Saturday since he can’t do that now. A four-inning outing on Tuesday took Burres out of contention.
  • Asked when he would name a starter for Saturday, manager John Russell said: “In the next few days.” That really doesn’t tell us all that much given that there are only three days until Saturday. So take your guess.
  • The options remain Chris Jakubauskas, Kevin Hart, Brad Lincoln. Jakubauskas is scheduled to pitch for Indianapolis on Thursday, and if he does, that would take him out of the running. Same goes for Hart, who is scheduled to pitch on Friday.
  • Given Aki Iwamura’s experience at third and Delwyn Young’s lack of it, I asked Russell if he might consider moving Iwamura to third and Young to second in LaRoche’s absence. Russell said the thought had been considered, but the Pirates hesitate to take Iwamura away from second where he’s growing more comfortable.
  • Right-hander Ross Ohlendorf said he expects to throw off the mound on Thursday for the first time since making an April 7 start. That’s definitely an encouraging step in the right direction for Ohlendorf, who threw off flat ground again on Wednesday.
  • Charlie Morton and Zach Duke were engaged in a lengthy conversation today in the clubhouse . I obviously don’t know what it was related to, but it could very well be Duke’s way of showing Morton some support and offering some pitching-related guidance. I will tell you this — while fans have obviously lost some faith in Morton’s abilities over these first three starts, his teammates haven’t. Duke will be the first to tell you Morton has better stuff than any of the other pitchers in the clubhouse. And everyone wants to see Morton succeed.
  • Lost in Tuesday’s lopsided defeat was the fact that first baseman Jeff Clement snapped an 0-for-20 streak with a ninth-inning single. It wasn’t anything special, but for Clement, it was definitely something.
  • Ryan Doumit enters Wednesday with just two hits in his last 23 at-bats. Doumit can change the dynamic of the lineup one direction or the other based upon his production, and the Pirates certainly need more from him.  

Pirates lineup:

  1. Aki Iwamura (2B)
  2. Andrew McCutchen (CF)
  3. Lastings Milledge (LF)
  4. Garrett Jones (RF)
  5. Ryan Doumi (C)
  6. Jeff Clement (1B)
  7. Delwyn Young (3B)
  8. Zach Duke (LHP)
  9. Ronny Cedeno (SS)

Brewers lineup:

  1. Rickie Weeks (2B)
  2. Carlos Gomez (CF)
  3. Ryan Braun (LF)
  4. Prince Fielder (1B)
  5. Casey McGehee (3B)
  6. Corey Hart (RF)
  7. Gregg Zaun (C)
  8. Alcides Escobar (SS)
  9. Yovani Gallardo (RHP)

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Bucs recall SS Diaz; LHP Burres to Triple-A

Jenifer Langosch/

The Pirates just announced that they have recalled shortstop Argenis Diaz from Triple-A and optioned LHP Brian Burres back there.

The Pirates’ decision to send Burres back to Indianapolis doesn’t come as much of a surprise. He was here to give the Pirates a multiple-inning option, and he did that on Tuesday night. After pitching four innings on Tuesday, Burres wasn’t going to be available for the next few days or to spot start on Saturday. Now he can get back into the Triple-A rotation and pitch regularly.

We’ll learn more about the Pirates’ decision to summon Diaz when the clubhouse opens in a bit, but the need for an extra middle infielder makes me wonder if Bobby Crosby is hurt more than we know. Crosby was scratched due to left shoulder stiffness on Tuesday. Crosby is really the only back-up option the Pirates have at short (Delwyn Young has never played there), so if he is going to be unavailable for even just a couple more days, the Pirates needed another short-term backu up.

Diaz was on the club’s 40-man roster, so he was an easy option to call up for a temporary fill. The Pirates will need to call a pitcher up from Triple-A on Saturday to start, so Diaz might just be here until then.

Also, third baseman Andy LaRoche is not in the lineup again on Wednesday, presumably because of his recent back problems. That further depletes the Pirates’ infield options if he is still not ready to play. Another reason Diaz might be here.

More definitive answers on the roster moves to come shortly after a visit with manager John Russell

Bucs make six cuts

The Pirates made their first cuts of the spring after Sunday’s 10-5 win over the Yankees, sending six players out of Major League camp.

Outfielder Brandon Jones and infielder Argenis Diaz were both optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis. Pitchers Ronald Uviedo and Ramon Aguero, as well as outfielder Gorkys Hernandez were optioned to Double-A Altoona. Infielder Brian Friday was reassigned to Minor League camp. Friday is expected to be Indianapolis’ starting shortstop this season.

None of the six came into Spring Training expecting to be in competition for an Opening Day roster spot. Jones, who the Pirates claimed off waivers in January, is the only one of the group who has prior Major League experience.

With the cuts, Pittsburgh now has 54 active players in Major League camp.

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Day 5: Daily Squeeze

Jenifer Langosch/

Walker, Neil 2.jpgEveryone is here and accounted for and was more than 24 hours before the Pirates have their first full squad workout. (That will be Tuesday morning at 10 a.m. There is a full team meeting an hour earlier).

The final few missing position players to trickle in this morning included Andrew McCutchen, Lastings Milledge, Ronny Cedeno, Gorkys Hernandez and Argenis Diaz. It might have been a dangerous move to put McCutchen and Milledge in adjacent lockers in the clubhouse. The two are sure to liven up the atmosphere in a hurry.

As for the rest of your notes from a sunny Bradenton Monday:

  • Position players who had not yet undergone physicals spent much of the day in that process.
  • Most of the position players went on the field for workouts, though not all. Two that I did not see on participating in workouts were Brandon Moss and Akinori Iwamura, though both were around the clubhouse afterward.
  • Neil Walker (pictured above) spent time fielding grounders at third and second. Again, he’s getting work in wherever he can. Bobby Crosby also did some moving around. After working on his defense at short, Crosby spent some time fielding grounders at third.
  • Infielder Ramon Vazquez said he has been encouraged by the progress of his surgically-repaired knee these last few days. Vazquez is fielding grounders hit right to him and did some sprints at 70 percent Thursday, Friday and Saturday. He is scheduled to take batting practice for the first time on Tuesday.
  • A handful of the Minor League players have already begun reporting for Minor League camp. I spotted Daniel Moskos (No. 4 overall pick in 2007 Draft) among them.
  • The second group of pitchers had their second side session of spring on Monday after another 40 minutes of defensive drills.
  • Among the Pirates alum who are here helping out at Spring Training are Manny Sanguillen, Kent Tekulve and Bill Virdon. I’ve been told that Bill Mazeroski is set to arrive later this week.

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Winter ball update

Jenifer Langosch/

Here are the most recent stats from some of the organization’s more notable winter ball participants. It’s also worth noting that the Mexican and Dominican leagues wrapped up their regular season at the end of December:

  • Brian Bixler (Mexico): 35 G, .300 BA, 5 2B, 5 HR, 12 RBI, 13 BB, 42 SO
  • Ronny Cedeno (Venezuela): 40 G, .300 BA, 4 2B, 2 3B, 10 HR, 20 RBI
  • Argenis Diaz (Venezuela): 47 G, .194 BA, 3 2B, 5 RBI, 9 BB, 26 SO
  • Gorkys Hernandez (Venezuela): 33 G, .245 BA, 4 2B, 1 HR, 9 RBI
  • Erik Kratz (Dominican Republic): 16 G, .065 BA, 1 2B, 4 RBI
  • Starling Marte (Dominican Republic): 11 G, .231 BA, 2 SB 
  • Neil Walker (Venezuela): 34 G, .267 BA, 9 2B, 4 HR, 16 RBI
  • Ramon Aguero (Dominican Republic): 15 G, 0-1, 15 IP, 5 ER, 7 BB, 16 K, 2 SV 
  • Wilfredo Ledezma (Venezuela): 11 G, 2-4, 49.2 IP, 27 ER, 20 BB, 44 K
  • Jean Machi (Venezuela): 31 G, 2-0, 36 IP, 5 ER, 6 BB, 27 K, 16 SV
  • R.J. Rodriguez (Puerto Rico): 18 G, 1-0, 22.1 IP, 9 ER, 6 BB, 12 K, 2 SV
  • Ronald Uviedo (Venezuela): 21 G, 3-0, 24 IP, 7 ER, 6 BB, 24 K