Pirates send Matt Diaz back to Braves for PTBNL

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Matt Diaz, who played for the Braves from 2006 to 2010 before being non-tendered this offseason, is back in Atlanta for the stretch run.

Diaz signed a two-year, $4.25 million deal with Pittsburgh as a free agent, but he hit just .253 with zero homers and a .627 OPS in 100 games and the Pirates were happy to unload his $2 million contract for 2012 (along with some cash to cover part of the salary) in exchange for a player to be named later.

Diaz was also ineffective last year, but in the four previous seasons he batted .316 with an .829 OPS in 427 games and at minimum he’s a solid platoon option versus left-handed pitching.

And he brings some added value as a crazy fan wrangler.

The Giants are looking at Jarrod Dyson for center field

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The Giants, you have have heard, picked up Andrew McCutchen yesterday. As things currently stand, McCutchen is first on the depth chart at center field. That’s probably a placeholder situation, though, because (a) McCutchen really shouldn’t be playing center field anymore; and (b) the Giants know he shouldn’t be playing center field anymore. I mean, if an evil genie appeared and told Bruce Bochy he’d be granted any wish he wanted, but the price of it would be that McCutchen HAS to be his center fielder, I’m sure everyone would make do, but it’s not an ideal situation.

To that end, Jerry Crasnick of ESPN is reporting that the Giants have free agent Jarrod Dyson in their sights. Jon Jay and Cameron Maybin are considered some backup options.

Dyson is obviously a superior defender, and he has some wheels too. The bat is no great shakes — he’s never been even a league average hitter in terms of OPS+ — but you can put up with the .251/.324/.350 with five homers and 30 RBI he posted in 2017 if you’re getting good leather in the spacious AT&T Park outfield. He’ll steal you some bases too, having swiped 28 in 111 games for the Mariners last season.

The big splash move would be to go get Lorenzo Cain, but that’ll cost the Giants, who are already near the luxury tax threshold, some more money. Dyson may be a better fit in light of that.