The Pirates have recalled Brent Morel from Triple-A Indianapolis to fill the roster sport left open after Phil Irwin was optioned. Morel posted a .215/.279/.312 line in 104 plate appearances with the Indians. For his career, Morel is batting.229/.276/.333 in 669 plate appearances. He was selected off waivers by the Pirates in February.
Obviously, this move further affirms the Pirates commitment to not promote Gregory Polanco before the Super Two threshold, unless a long-term contract is in place. Morel will provide the Pirates with another light-hitting utility infielder to complement Josh Harrison and Clint Barmes. More importantly, it gives us another opportunity to dedicate a comment section to the Pirates' top prospect.
UPDATE: The Pirates announced that the suspensions for Travis Snider and Russell Martin have been upheld. Snider will serve his two games this weekend; Martin will serve a one-game suspension when he returns from the disabled list.
The suspensions mean that the Pirates have lost a lefty outfielder for the first two games of a series in which they will face three straight right-handed starters. Hurdle would not reveal whether he or the front office found out about the suspensions before recalling Morel. The Bucs have two left-handed hitting outfielders besides Polanco who could have been considered for promotion, Jaff Decker and Chris Dickerson.
Hurdle said the team did consider bringing up a left-handed bat from Triple-A, but that there were other considerations that needed to be weighed other than handedness.
"Roster availability, if he's on or he's not, do you have to create room?" Hurdle said. "Who do you have to designate if you have to add somebody that is not on the roster ... we talked about it all."
Dickerson is batting .302/.368/.453 in Triple-A.