Yankees showing interest in Angels’ Alberto Callaspo

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The Yankees are aiming to bring in a new third baseman by Wednesday’s 4 p.m. ET trade deadline. And they apparently have a specific target in mind.

From Danny Knobler of CBS Sports comes word that New York’s front office has “been in touch” with the Angels about a potential trade for 30-year-old infielder Alberto Callaspo. Knobler says the Angels “have made nearly everyone available, as they try to rework their roster for next year and beyond.”

Callaspo is batting just .252/.323/.348 with five homers and 36 RBI in 85 games this season for Anaheim, but Yankees third baseman have a combined .217/.276/.288 slash line and only four big flies.

Callaspo is making a $4.1 million salary this year and is owed a $4.875 million sum for the 2014 campaign.

Report: Pirates to convert JB Shuck into two-way player

JB Shuck
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Rob Biertempfel of The Athletic reports that the Pirates have decided to convert outfielder JB Shuck into a two-way player. Recent comments relayed from the club’s director of player development, Larry Broadway, indicated that the outfielder would be coached in developing his pitching skills while working at Triple-A Indianapolis.

Per Broadway, the change would be enacted to help the veteran outfielder develop some much-needed versatility in the majors, where he’s only ever been limited to outfield and DH responsibilities. Well, except for the two games in which he pitched an inning of relief: once, against the Nationals in a blowout 11-4 loss in 2016, then in a similarly painful loss to the Diamondbacks this past April. During the latter outing, he finished the game with a 13-pitch ninth inning after allowing just one hit and one walk.

Add to that one minor-league outing in 2012, and the 31-year-old Shuck has pitched just three times over the course of his 12-season career in pro ball. While he has three years of experience on the mound from his college days, he’ll need quite a bit of preparation to handle the kind of workload expected from a two-way outfielder/reliever: 20+ innings pitched over a season and 20+ games played as a designated hitter or position player.

Still, his lack of experience doesn’t seem to faze Broadway, at least not this early in the process. There’s no word yet on how soon Shuck would be expected to debut his new skillset on a major-league level.