Pedro Alvarez has recovered from the quad injury that placed him on the disabled list back on May 21, but rather than bring him back as their third baseman, the Pirates chose to option him to Triple-A on Saturday.
Alvarez, the second overall pick in the 2008 draft, hit just .208/.283/.304 with two homers and 10 RBI in 125 at-bats before getting hurt. He had hit .235/.386/.382 with one homer in 12 games on his rehab assignment.
“Pedro remains a big part of our future,” GM Neal Huntington said in an email, “But we believe making this move is the best way to get him back on track offensively and defensively so he can help us win games at the major league level.”
In the meantime, the Pirates are left with Josh Harrison getting most of the starts at third base. Chase d’Arnaud is needed at shortstop with Ronny Cedeno out, and Brandon Wood will serve as a backup at both positions.
All in all, Pirates third basemen have hit .230/.287/.331 with six homers and 35 RBI this season. Alvarez’s OPS at third is .596, Harrison’s is .672 and Wood’s is .592.
Yankees top prospect Gleyber Torres will be promoted to the majors this weekend, per a report from Jack Curry of the YES Network. Torres was expected to make his debut earlier in the season, but his starting date was pushed back after he suffered a bout of back tightness last Monday. Now, however, it looks like he’s finally healthy enough to make an impact on a team that’s in sore need of an offensive boost. As of Saturday evening, the team has yet to officially confirm the move.
The 21-year-old infielder has made quite the impression in Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre this spring, slashing .370/.415/.543 with five extra-base hits and 11 RBI in his first 53 plate appearances. Prior to the start of the 2018 season, he was ranked first overall in the Yankees’ system and fifth among the league’s best prospects (via MLB Pipeline). His numbers at the plate have been made all the more impressive by the fact that he’s only 10 months removed from Tommy John surgery on his non-throwing arm; neither the injury nor the lengthy recovery process seems to have had any detrimental effect on his game play this year.
While Torres appears most comfortable as a shortstop, he’s not expected to supplant Didi Gregorius in a starting role. Instead, it’s more likely that he’ll sub in at second and third base among the likes of Miguel Andujar, Neil Walker and Ronald Torreyes.