FanShot

Baseball Prospectus: Minor League Free Agents

It's subscription-only, unfortunately. This is a nifty writeup of the available minor league free agents. Picking up strikeout-and-walk guy Alexander Smit, formerly of the Reds, and turning him into a full-time reliever seems like the sort of thing Neal Huntington might do. The minor league free agent list includes a couple of other interesting, and semi-familiar, names. One is Ryan Shealy, the former Rockies minor leaguer who many of us wanted the Bucs to trade for before Adam LaRoche arrived. He missed most of the last season with an injury, but I still hold out hope that there's some hitting ability in there--he has always hit well in Class AAA, and he was awesome in brief duty for the Royals in 2008. The Pirates still need help at the corners, and Shealy has as good a chance as anybody of being next year's Garrett Jones. Another interesting guy is Ruben Gotay, who was actually in Spring Training with the Pirates earlier this year. It's kind of a shame he didn't stick, because he ended up having an amazing OBP-heavy season for the Diamondbacks' Class AAA affiliate in Reno. He's defensively limited, but he could probably play the Ramon Vazquez role better than Vazquez himself, and the Pirates have a lot of instability in their infield. (Trivia: the Pirates acquired Ruben's uncle, Julio, in 1962 in the trade that sent Dick Groat to the Cardinals.)

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