The Pirates have promoted infielder Max Moroff and optioned starter Steven Brault. Also, they will reintroduce Jeff Locke and Ryan Vogelsong to their rotation this week against the Braves, with Locke starting Wednesday and Vogelsong Thursday.
Vogelsong isn’t on the active roster right now, so Moroff’s stay with the big-league team could be short. Moroff can play second, third and shortstop and has good on-base skills, although he has limited power and has batted just .229 this season. He was named the Pirates’ minor league player of the year in 2015, though, after batting .293/.374/.409 for Altoona.
Locke and Vogelsong will join Gerrit Cole, Jameson Taillon and Francisco Liriano in the Bucs’ rotation (although the Pirates could still add a starting pitcher by tomorrow, potentially changing their plans). Locke had been in the Pirates’ bullpen. Vogelsong has been out the past two months with a nasty facial injury after being struck by a pitch.
Vogelsong’s return is somewhat of a feel-good story, but overall, the idea of Locke and Vogelsong rejoining the Pirates’ rotation is a depressing one. Neither has done much this year to deserve the Bucs’ faith.