Sean Rodriguez, whom the Rays designated for assignment last week, has been traded to the Pirates for a player to be named later and cash. And to make room on the roster Pittsburgh designated for assignment Gaby Sanchez.
Pittsburgh is committed to the left-handed-hitting Pedro Alvarez at first base in 2015 and the right-handed-hitting Sanchez could have stuck around to platoon with him, but the Pirates felt his projected $2.7 million arbitration salary was too much for that role (and/or they prefer Rodriguez).
Rodriguez brings a lot of defensive versatility to the table as a utility man and can hit left-handed pitching pretty well, but he’s been terrible versus right-handed pitching and is a career .225 hitter with a .670 OPS overall. He’s projected to make around $2 million via arbitration for 2015, after which Rodriguez will be a free agent.
Sanchez struggled this year, hitting .229 with seven homers and a .679 OPS in 123 games. He’s a career .254 hitter with a .744 OPS, including .291 with an .863 OPS versus lefties, so at the very least the 31-year-old Sanchez will find a part-time role elsewhere.
At the end of yesterday’s column for the Tampa Bay Times, Mark Topkin suggests Logan Forsythe is likely to play some first base for the Rays at least during the spring next year. It’s a byproduct of the team designating Sean Rodriguez for assignment last week.
Forsythe, who turns 28 in January, spent most of his time on the field at second base but also played some third base, some shortstop, and even spent some time in left field. Adding first base to his list of skills will only add to his versatility and help the Rays’ roster flexibility.
Forsythe batted .223/.287/.329 with six home runs and 26 RBI in 336 plate appearances during the 2014 season. James Loney is currently the Rays’ everyday first baseman.
After five seasons in Tampa Bay utility man Sean Rodriguez has been designated for assignment by the Rays.
Rodriguez was projected to make around $2 million via arbitration, but the Rays decided to move on after the 29-year-old hit .211 with 12 homers and a .701 OPS in 96 games this season.
Rodriguez has played at least 300 career innings at second base, shortstop, third base, left field, and first base, but he never developed as much as hoped offensively on the way to a lifetime .225 batting average and .670 OPS.
Pirates outfielder Starling Marte took a pitch off his helmet last Friday night. A concussion was initially ruled out — the Bucs were instead calling it “head trauma” — but now there’s this …
Marte also suffered a head injury in late June when he collided with the knee of Rays infielder Sean Rodriguez while trying to steal second base, so it’s best to play this one safe. The speedy 25-year-old has posted a disappointing .255/.328/.385 batting line in 86 games this season after batting .280/.343/.441 in 135 games last season. Marte has tallied 74 stolen bases in 268 career games at the major league level.
Pirates left fielder Starling Marte banged his head into the knee of Rays infielder Sean Rodriguez while trying to steal second base in the top of the fifth inning Tuesday. A little white later, the Bucs tweeted this …
An extended absence seems likely even if the concussion is deemed mild. Pittsburgh can roll with the hot-hitting Josh Harrison in left field with second baseman Neil Walker recovered from an appendectomy.