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Jason Grilli To Sign With Pirates

Rob Biertempfel reports that the Pirates will sign righty reliever Jason Grilli, who'd had 43 strikeouts in 32.2 innings for the Phillies' Class AAA affiliate, and he'll take Chris Leroux's place on the roster.

I'm not sure Grilli is actually an upgrade on Leroux at this stage, but obviously, this move doesn't mean we've seen the last of Leroux. I'm sure he'll be back the first time there's an injury. This move adds depth to the organization, which could prove to be important in the next couple months. Grilli has had control problems in the majors, but then his minor-league numbers are really good.

Also, Biertempfel tweets that the Pirates could send Garrett Jones to Oakland as part of a deal for Josh Willingham and lefty reliever Craig Breslow. As I've written before, I'm not a huge fan of Willingham, who's a poor defensive player, but he's arguably a better hitter than Jones, and he's a righty, which makes him a better fit for the Pirates' offense right now. Breslow would also be useful - he'll be an upgrade on Tony Watson, who would likely head back to the minors. Willingham could bring back a draft pick as well.

What you think of this deal depends on the years of control of Jones the Bucs have left. At this point, he looks like a pretty marginal player, and it's possible he would be non-tendered at some point, particularly since he's heading into his early 30s. So if the Pirates can get two players who can help in exchange for Jones, that would be fine with me.