As first reported by MASN’s Roch Kubatko, the Pirates have acquired utilityman Steve Lombardozzi from the Orioles in exchange for cash considerations. Lombardozzi has been extended an invitation to major league spring training, where he will attempt to win a spot on the Pirates’ Opening Day roster.
Lombardozzi has played all around the diamond defensively and he is only 26 years old, but the former 19th-round pick of the Nationals owns a weak .266/.297/.341 career batting line through 829 plate appearances at the major league level. Washington dealt him to Detroit in the Doug Fister trade back in December 2013.
He was then moved to the O’s in March 2014 for veteran shortstop Alex Gonzalez.
The Pirates are officially shutting down Chris Archer for the season, GM Neal Huntington revealed Sunday. It’s more of a formality than anything else, but, as the Pirates are currently out of postseason contention, there seems to be no point in forcing the right-hander to accelerate his recovery from right shoulder inflammation.
Archer, 30, sustained the injury in late August and was initially projected to return sometime during September. He’s been throwing from flat ground over the last several weeks, but there had been no indication that he was ready to resume starting duties for the club. He’ll end his 2019 run with a 3-9 record in 23 starts and a 5.19 ERA, 4.1 BB/9, 10.8 SO/9, and 0.7 fWAR across 119 2/3 innings pitched; not his worst performance to date, but a considerable step down from the sub-5.00 ERA and 2.6 fWAR he posted with the Rays and Pirates in 2018.
With two weeks left in the regular season, the Pirates will soon wrap up their fourth consecutive non-contending campaign. Following Saturday’s brutal 14-1 loss to the Cubs, they were mathematically eliminated from postseason qualification. They last reached the playoffs in 2015, though it’s been six years since they advanced past the wild card tiebreaker and 27 years since they advanced past the Division Series.