Today was a very busy day for Pirates GM Neil Huntington. Probably just one of plenty busy days this coming month. The Bucco roster started changing early today with the trade of Eric Hinske. Hinske was traded away to the New York Yankees for two prospects. The Bucs acquire pitcher Casey Erickson and catcher/outfielder Eric Fryer. The Pirates also pitch in 400k of Hinske's salary. Both guys will start out in Class A for the Pirates.
Hinske, while a true professional, shouldn't have brought much of a return but Huntington was able to grab two prospects for him. The Bucs actually placed Hinske on waivers last week and he went unclaimed. So it was somewhat puzzling to see the Yankees offer up two youngsters for him.
Erickson has pitched as a both a starter and a reliever this season, but the Bucs will use him primarily as a starter. He throws four pitches for strikes and has a reputation of throwing strikes and throwing inside. Both traits appeal to the Pirates. In 44 innings pitched this season, Erickson has struck out 37 with a 2.25 era. Every report I have found on him has been positive.
The Bucs actually tried to acquire Fryer last season when he was in the Brewers organization. he was primarily a catcher last season, but has been mostly playing left field this year. Huntington said Fryer will return to catching immediately. He has an ops around .700 and 11 steals this season.
The trade is a win for the Bucs. You get a couple more youngsters in the organization. These guys probably won't be stars, but anything you get for Hinske is a positive. They both turn 24 in August and neither is viewed as a big time prospect, but both are viewed as improving the depth in the organization.
Plus it may free some at bats for Steve Pearce and newly called up Garret Jones to get a better look at them.